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Fairmont State's Folklife Center to celebrate Halloween season with three day festival eventPage Title Impact
Fairmont State News

Fairmont State's Folklife Center to celebrate Halloween season with three day festival event

Oct 03, 2023Events, Folk Life

Lou MauiriThe Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center will present the first annual Supernatural Stories and Songs Festival, a three-day event featuring traditional music, dance, and storytelling with a Halloween theme.

The Folklife Center, and the Fairmont area, have long been known for their special connection to otherworldly and haunting lore. The Fairmont State University Library’s namesake, Ruth Ann Musick, is most famous for her occult storybook “The Telltale Lilac Bush and Other West Virginia Ghost Tales.”

“The Folklife Center wouldn’t exist without the supernatural stories Ruth Ann Musick collected from local folks when she taught here at Fairmont State University,” says Folklife Center director Dr. Lydia Warren. “With these events, we’re honoring her research on the supernatural as it manifests in traditional tales and tunes, and we’re making sure these traditions keep on living through free events.”

Outside of her legacy as an educator and author, Ruth Ann is also said to have a ghostly connection to the Folklife Center.

“The Folklife Center is also where Ruth Ann Musick lived—and died—when it was an apartment building,” said Warren. “Some believe she still inhabits the building and makes it known when she likes and does not like the events. Whether she will attend the Supernatural Stories and Songs Festival events is not yet known.“

The upcoming Halloween events will take place from October 26-28. All events are free, open to the public, and will have refreshments available.

On Thursday, October 26 at 7 p.m. the West Virginia Storytelling Guild will present a concert of supernatural stories for ages ten and up. On Friday, October 27 at 6 p.m. the Kennedy Barn String Band will play for a spooky square dance. Costumes are encouraged and the featured square dance callers are Taylor Runner and Lou Maiuri.

On Saturday, October 28 at 4 p.m. the MacAbre Brothers will perform a set of traditional murder ballads. The MacAbre Brothers are a duo consisting of West Virginia musicians Pete Kosky and David O'Dell, who have played together for over twenty years.

The Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center is located on Squibb Wilson Boulevard in Fairmont. For more information on this event or other Folklife Center programming, please email or call 304-367-4286.