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Adams County Heritage Festival Lineup

(8/15) Terrific talent is coming to Gettysburg for this year’s Adams County Heritage Festival on Sunday, Sept. 15 from noon to 5 PM at the Gettysburg Recreation Park on Long Lane. The Festival will open with an invocation, greetings from local officials and traditional bagpiper Rodney Yeaple. Next up will be “Rootbound,” a duo from Harrisburg, featuring American roots music of the sort local to south central PA at the time of the Battle. At 1 PM, a stunning group, the Barynya Russian dancers, six of them, will perform authentic Russian dances from a country never before featured at this Festival. They’ll be followed by local singer-songwriter Ray Owen’s program for children of all ages, entitled “Songs and Stories of Freedom, Hope and Emancipation,” emphasizing Gettysburg’s role in ending slavery.

Another incredible performance will be that of six fusion musicians and dancers from Philadelphia, including Ustad Shafaat Khan and Sistah Mafalda, who will merge Indian sitar and African American drums and dance. Closing the Festival will be the South American songs of the Emily Pinkerton Trio, who draw their music (and lyrics) from Chile and Venezuela. Ethnic food to complement Latin American and Indian music will be available in the Food Pavilion, along with soul food, Mexican cuisine, Italian pizza, ice cream, barbecue and Chinese favorites.

Evoking the historical role of women in rural Pennsylvania, craft demonstrations will include spinning and processing wool, knitting, quilting, tatting, rug braiding, and moccasin making. Several booths will feature mountain and hammered dulcimers and other folk instruments, along with a demonstration of clogging. A bevy of animals will be available to pet, including a large array of exotic rabbits, alpacas and goats. Strawberry Hill Nature Preserve will be on hand with snakes and other small critters. Children’s booths focused on the theme of Diversity will be strategically located throughout the Festival.

A number of craft vendors, including several jewelry makers, will display their wares for sale. Many non-profit organizations will staff booths to distribute information and recruit volunteers. In its 22nd year, the Adams County Heritage Festival continues its dual mission: to appreciate the food, crafts and music of south-central PA, but also to experience music, foods and dance from other parts of the world.

This family-friendly celebration is handicap accessible and will especially suit those with small budgets. With free admission, free parking and free entertainment, it can’t get any better. Most important, the Festival also provides an opportunity to celebrate community unity and bring out the best in one small corner of the globe. For more information, call 717-334-0752.

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