The National Folk Festival set to happen in Nashville this September is cancelled. One official blamed what she called “timing problems and acts of God” for sabotaging the event last year, and leaving it in debt. Now the festival hopes to regroup for 2013.
The National Folk Festival moves from city to city in three-year stints. Nashville beat out dozens of competitors when it won rights to host the festival from 2011 to 2013. But barely a month after that announcement, the city flooded. Organizers say the result was a huge setback for planning and fundraising.
“I thought it came off great.”
Nashville singer Frank Howard was part of a program about the musical history of Jefferson Street. Howard says this year’s cancellation is a disappointment.
“When I found out about it, I searched myself to try just to understand – Why wouldn’t you have an event that brings all of these different people together, discussing the heritage? And I don’t know. I don’t know why you wouldn’t have that.”
Officials say last year far fewer people showed up than they had hoped, because when it wasn’t raining it was savagely hot.
Julia Olin is the executive director for the National Council for the Traditional Arts, which helps run the festival. She says they’ll look at booking a different weekend next year – maybe one closer to fall. In the meantime Olin says there’s still debt left over from last year – but won’t say how much.