BROKEN BOW -- The upcoming Beavers Bend Folk Festival and Craft Show offers the entire family a chance to step back in time and enjoy a weekend outing.
As one of Oklahoma’s most popular autumn events, each year the festival attracts more than 17,000 visitors to southeastern Oklahoma just as the colors of the season begin to emerge.
The festival is held at the Oklahoma Forest Heritage Center Museum in Beavers Bend State Park on Nov. 9, 10 and 11. The Museum is operated by the Forest Heritage Center Advisory Board and Oklahoma Forestry Services.
The show offers a chance to relax while offering a variety of exhibits. More than 70 exhibitors and vendors will showcase turn-of-the-century crafts and skills like broom making, woodturning, lye soap making and knife making.
Herbalists will share their knowledge. Instrument-makers will exhibit their work, and quilters will show their best.
Attractions for younger show attendees include: a forested courtyard, storytellers and a petting zoo. The children’s activity area also features the opportunity to create a puppet show utilizing imagination and handmade paper puppets.
A unique addition to this year’s show is Okie Dirt. This husband and wife team embraces the artistry of Oklahoma’s legendary soil through the production of creative and natural products. They seek out the reddest soil, hand dig clay and use it to dye shirts.
The twang of banjos, the wail of the fiddles and the ring of the dulcimer strings provide a musical backdrop for the show. Four of the country’s best folk musicians will be featured on an outdoor stage throughout the three-day festival.
New to the stage is Fork and Knife; an old time duo featuring Pete Howard on fiddle and vocals and Matt Cartier on banjo, guitar, cello, vocals and feet. Pete’s prowess on the fiddle is complemented by Matt’s four-time winning jig dancing and claw hammer banjo playing. This duo will leave audiences tapping their feet.
The show’s food has a history of tastiness. This year the food takes a sweet turn with hand-churned ice cream added to the endless array of harvest favorites. Back by popular demand are fried green tomatoes, pork-o-bobs, big-foot toes, cowboy tacos and turkey legs.
Wash it all down with fresh apple cider or old-time root beer. The spread offers festival-goers a chance to sample unique and delicious foods.
Not to be overlooked is the natural scenery the festival’s location provides. The state park is home to many evergreens, and the changing colors of the area’s maple, oak and ash trees provide a stunning contrast among the greens. The vibrant hues of red, orange and gold foliage create the perfect setting for the festival and its variety of outdoor activities.
Admission to the festival is free. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.
For more information, contact the Forest Heritage Center Museum at (580) 494-6497 or email@example.com and visit www.forestry.ok.gov/folk-festival.