Workshops, Activities and Excursions

The Northern Appalachian Folk Festival holds a variety of free workshops throughout the weekend on topics of regional interest. Most workshops are suitable for all-ages, do not require pre-registration and are held at various downtown locations. Visitors can also enjoy excursions, films and friendly competitions. View Our Schedule

2017 Activities and Workshop Topics

The Arts

•  Appalachian Mountain and Celtic Music
 Louise Bem and the Grand Old Dames, members of the Sandy Lick Dulcimer Club
2PM Saturday, Amplify/Indiana Theater, 637 Phila. St.
Listen and learn about mountain music and the Appalachian mountain dulcimer.
Louise and the Grand Old Dames will also perform 6PM Friday night (September 19) at the Artists Hand Gallery as part of our series of after-shows.

•  Harvest-to-Use at IUP’s Wood Center
BA Harrington, MFA
Director, The Wood Center at IUP
11AM Sunday|Clara Kate, 580 Phila. St.
See and learn about projects students have worked on in using lumber harvested from campus trees felled due to disease, construction, or mother nature. Read more about the program.

RELATED: The Wood Center at IUP will also host a log-sawing contest 3-5PM Saturday, September 9. “Come try your hand at one end of a traditional two-person crosscut saw, coached by expert sawyers, Jan and Steve Repik. Anyone may join in the fun!”

RELATED: The Pennsylvania WoodMobile will also be on hand Saturday, September 9 and Sunday, September 10  at NAFF17. This traveling, interactive exhibit offers visitors a chance to learn about the history and importance of Pennsylvania’s forest resources. The 34-foot mobile unit’s interior and displays are finished in woods representing popular commercial species grown in the state.


•  William T. Clarke and His Photos
 Steve Manginell, Lumber Heritage Region Outreach Coordinator
1PM Sunday | TBA
A dusty box discovered in a shed turned out to contain something more valuable than old window panes. A talk by Steve Manginell accompanies the Wood on Glass photo exhibit generously lent by Pennsylvania’s Lumber Heritage Region. This collection of photographs by William T. Clarke chronicles the lumber industry and daily life between 1890 and 1917 in Pennsylvania’s Potter, McKean and Clinton Counties. The exhibit will be on view in Indiana September 4-12. Location and details TBA.

The Natural World

• The Allegheny Woodrat
Dr. Joseph Duchamp, IUP Biology Department
Details coming…

The Butterflies of Pennsylvania
Jim Monroe
2:30PM Sunday, September 10 | Amplify/Indiana Theater, 637 Phila. St.
Co-author of “Butterflies of Pennsylvania: A Field Guide,” (University of Pittsburgh Press) discusses butterflies and his book.

Home, Garden and Edible Stuff

• “Northern Appalachian Foodways: Sustainability and A Seat at the Table”
Abigail Adams, PhD
2PM Sunday | The Coney, 642 Phila. St.
Food culture and contemporary issues in the region.

• Garlic
Karin Eller, Planet Earth Greenhouse
11AM Sunday | Spaghetti Benders, 563 Phila. St.
Learn how to grow and preserve your own garlic.

The Herb Study Group of Indiana County
Virginia Bash
1PM Sunday | Spaghetti Benders, 563 Phila. St.
Virginia Bash and the Herb Study Group will provide an overview of herbs – how to plant, grow and preserve.


Contemporary Issues

Injection Wells: A Community Response in Indiana County
Judy Wanchism, Coordinator of the East Run Hellbenders Society
11AM Saturday, September 9 | Clara Kate, 580 Phila. St.
Representatives from the group profiled in Rolling Stone discuss their work.

Immigration and Sanctuary Cities
Esneda Elser, Joanie Brooks / IUP Immigration Group
1PM Saturday| Spaghetti Benders, 563 Philadelphia St



The Last Raft documentary
6:30PM Thursday, September 7 | Amplify/Indiana Theater, 637 Phila. St.
The story of a timber raft built on the upper waters of the West Branch of the Susquehanna and floated down the river in March of 1938. The adventure took a tragic turn when, after successfully braving the obstacles of the upper river, the 112-foot long raft collided with a bridge pier near Muncy, Pennsylvania. The documentary includes restored, rare footage from 1938, eyewitness accounts, and interviews with descendants of those involved. On loan by the Indiana County Parks and Recreation and granted permission for viewing by the Muncy Historical Society



Indiana County Historical Society  – On your own/self-guided
Saturday September 10th 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
621 Wayne Ave. Indiana, PA 15701
Phone: 724-463-9600
Exhibitions on the history of Western Pennsylvania that illuminate the past and enlighten the present. Permanent displays and a variety of changing exhibits explain how this community grew and what its people have done. Permanent exhibits include coal mining; farm and home; Native Americans; and an old doctor’s office and medical instruments display.

Friendly Competition

Click here to learn about our Storytellers and Liars Contest
2PM Saturday, Sept. 9 | The Coney, 642 Phila. St.


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