Five Year Agreement Continues Folklife Festival Partnership

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Date: June 25, 2014
Contact: Carol Johnson, NPS, (202) 245-4700
Contact: Becky Haberacker, Smithsonian, (202) 633-5183

 National Park Service and Smithsonian 
Sign Five-Year Agreement to Continue Folklife Festival Partnership 

The National Park Service (NPS) and the Smithsonian have finalized a five-year agreement to continue their partnership to present the annual Folklife Festival on the National Mall. Bob Vogel, superintendent of National Mall and Memorial Parks and Richard Kurin, the Smithsonian’s Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture, will sign the agreement during the Festival’s opening ceremony.

The general agreement recognizes the cultural importance of both the Festival and the National Mall and commits both parties to work collaboratively to produce the annual Festival on the Mall and to preserve its cultural and natural resources

“We are looking forward to continuing our partnership with the Smithsonian to produce this historically important celebration,” said Vogel.

The agreement states that the Festival will be held on the National Mall between 7th and 14th Streets and Madison and Jefferson Drives for the next five years whenever possible, and it will be guided by NPS regulations and resource management policies. It also commits the NPS to work with the Smithsonian to find a suitable location on the National Mall between Third and Seventh streets for the 2015 Festival during the second-phase of the Mall turf renovation. The project is slated to begin in August after the Festival and to be completed in spring 2016.

The Smithsonian and the National Park Service will also jointly commission and manage a scientific study on the effect of low-impact activities on the National Mall’s elm tree panels. The study’s findings will be used to guide and formulate responsible management of the tree panels and their use by the Festival and other permitted activities. 

About the National Park Service

More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 401 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit the National Park Service at, or on Facebook, Twitterand YouTube

About the Smithsonian Folklife Festival

The Smithsonian Folklife Festival, inaugurated in 1967, honors people from across the United States and around the world. With approximately 1 million visitors each year, the Festival unites presenters and performers in the nation’s capital to celebrate the diversity of cultural traditions. It is produced by the Smithsonian’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.


Last updated: April 10, 2015

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