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Peace Corps Featured in Folklife Festival 2011

June 30—July 4 and July 7—11

National Mall in Washington, D.C.

This summer the Peace Corps was one of three featured programs at the free Smithsonian Folklife Festival. This curated exhibition was one of the highlights of the Peace Corps' 50th Anniversary commemorative activities. We were delighted to be part of an event that has been a summer staple in our nation's capitol for 44 years.

Folklife Links

The Peace Corps: Fifty Years of Promoting World Peace and Friendship, brought together Peace Corps Volunteers—both past and present—and many of the people with whom they served. Some of the highlights included:

  • Demonstrations
  • Performances
  • Presentations of food and cooking traditions
  • Hands-on educational activities

Volunteer and Staff Spotlights

A look at the Volunteers, host country nationals and projects presented at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

Andrew Kuschner

Using a local layering process, Andrew created scarves and bags out of silk and wool with Urakayeva, his counterpart from Kyrgyzstan.
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Laura Kutner

Laura and her two Guatemalan counterparts constructed a wall made of plastic bottles filled with inorganic trash.
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Johnny McRae

With his Georgian counterpart, Johnny demonstrated and promoted the traditions of Georgian wine-making and explained why it still remains a relevant part of their culture and identity.
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Anna E. Hermann

Anna accompanied two Moroccan artisans from the High Atlas Mountains and demonstrated traditional carpet weaving from Morocco.
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Rahama Wright

Rahama and three women from Ghana shared their knowledge of shea production and demonstrated how to produce different kinds of shea butter.
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Camille Smith

Camille and many other Returned Peace Corps Volunteers from Peru danced and performed in a 30-minute production about Peru.
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Stuart Conway

Stuart and his counterparts demonstrated several clean stoves, including building a Honduran Justa stove each day.
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Elena Borquist Noyes

Elena accompanied one of the Tongan artists, Mele, to the Festival where she weaved in the traditional and modern Tongan way.
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Shelia Slemp

Shelia performed with the Opika Performance Group, a group of nine young Ukrainians.
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Tim O'Malley

Tim accompanied the Umalali Women Singers, a pre-eminent musical group that blends traditional Garifuna sounds influenced by Belizean and Honduran cultures.
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Ed Pettitt

Ed escorted five members of the Naro Giraffe Dance Group. The group performed traditional San dances.
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Barbara Jo White

Barbara Jo instructed Festival participants how to complete a world map, explaining the step–by–step instructions for how to plan, draw, and color a world map.
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Alexandra Chen

Alexandra and Peace Corps/Zambia team demonstrated how to create charcoal with corncobs, solar–food dryers, pedal–powered cellphone chargers, fuel–efficient stoves, and more.
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Vina Verman

Vina and mudcloth artisans showcased the Hallmark mudcloth bag project that she worked on in Mali.
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Laura Lemunyete

Laura and Samburu women, from northern Kenya, demonstrated basket weaving and design during the Festival.
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Leah & Tom Ferrebee

Leah and Tom with youth from the Rehoboth Children's Home performed tinikling, the national dance of the Philippines, and demonstrated Filipino games, papermaking and cooking.
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Patrick Marti

Patrick will introduced visitors to the fundamentals of organic farming and gardening, such as composting and companion planting.
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Elizabeth Spellman

Elizabeth and the Peace Corps/Zambia team demonstrated projects that use village resources to improve the standard of living by providing energy, fighting disease, and ensuring food security.
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Henry Chilufya

Henry and the Peace Corps/Zambia team demonstrated treadle pumps, pedal–powered clothes washers, coolers, cookers, smokers and more.
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FolkLife Festival in the News

Last updated Nov 20 2013