Union College Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture

April 8-9, 2016

Welcome to the Union College Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture Springtime in the Appalachian Mountains is something to see, especially when the hills are coming to life with the first burst of color — the redbuds. We invite you to come and visit Knox County anytime, but would love to have you enjoy our spring festival in Barbourville, KY. The Union College Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture has been named one of Kentucky’s Top 10 Spring Festivals & Events by the Kentucky Travel Industry Association.
The Festival will feature artists and craftspeople whose work represents Appalachia, whether in its origins, its materials, its workmanship or its symbolism. Only a limited number of each artistic form will be permitted. On site artisans will provide demonstrations of their talent. Some will teach classes to attendees. The festival hosts potters, weavers, spinners, quilters, sculptors, painters, glass artisans, crafters of coal, wood, stone, and herbalists. From jewelry to musical instruments, a vast variety of mediums will be represented and celebrated. Faculty and guest lecturers will take home memories unique to Appalachia speak to the richness of Appalachian history. Added this year, is the Redbud Festival Story Writing Contest. Make plans to come visit this year’s festival April 8th – 9th to take home a memory uniquely Appalachian!







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In 2003, the Barbourville Office of Tourism formed a committee to create and manage the Redbud Festival and Heritage Living Event on the campus of Union College. Several goals were established with two of those taking precedence-first was to bolster tourism to the sagging economy of southeastern Kentucky and second was to celebrate the rich history of the people of Appalachia. The Festival has now served for over a decade showcasing art, music, storytelling, and simple living practices indigenous to the Appalachian people. After ten successful years highlighting the richness of this area, the festival committee proposed that Union College take ownership of the event. Union readily agreed.  Along with a change of ownership came a change in name to “Redbud Festival of Appalachian Culture”. Union plans to delve more deeply into the culture of this region promoting the art, artisans, music, and instruments. Symposiums will share the history of early settlers and how they lived, celebrated life and worked.
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