Smithsonian Folklife Festival

  • Lummi Indians, 1968
  • African Diaspora, 1976
  • Hawai‘i, 1989
  • Baltic Nations, 1998
  • Silk Road, 2002
  • Perú: Pachamama, 2015

The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is an international exposition of living cultural heritage annually produced outdoors on the National Mall of the United States in Washington, D.C., by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.

Our free Festival takes place for two weeks every summer overlapping the Fourth of July holiday. It is an educational presentation that features cultural exemplars. We invite visitors to sing and dance along, try craft and game workshops, learn traditional recipes, ask questions, and take part in this unique cultural exchange.

In 2017 we will celebrate our fiftieth anniversary, featuring Circus Arts, American Folk: Celebrating the NEA Heritage Fellowship, and more to be announced. We hope you can come and share your own stories of five decades of cultural heritage on the National Mall.

Looking Ahead
Circus Arts at the 2017 Festival

Circus Arts at the 2017 Festival

As part of our fiftieth anniversary next summer, we will share the culture and history of circus arts across the United States.