Pitt Folk Fest Takes Break

The Pittsburgh Folk Festival won’t be celebrating its 53rd anniversary this year, as the latest cultural event falls to economic uncertainty, but organizers are hopeful it will resume next year.

The folk fest was scheduled May 1-2 at the city’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center, featuring music, dance, crafts and foods representing many of Pittsburgh’s diverse ethnic groups.

It relies mainly on corporate sponsors to pony up the $100,000 annual cost of staging the event. While the slow economy has dried up some of those sponsors, the festival’s board of directors is planning fundraisers to revive the festival next year and is already scouting venues.

“It was a very difficult decision that was not easily made,” Karen Hall, president of the Pittsburgh Folk Festival board, said in a statement. “We looked at our current funding stream against our potential expenses, and it just wasn’t possible.”

Founded in 1956, the Pittsburgh Folk Festival is one of the city’s oldest cultural events.