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Posted on: July 19, 2016

16-045 International Concert Series brings diverse music, culture to Peace Arch State Park

Concerts take place every Sunday in August

OLYMPIA – July 19, 2016– The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission’s Folk and Traditional Arts in the Parks Program invites the public to the annual Peace Arch International Concert Series at Peace Arch Historical State Park on the U.S.-Canadian border in Whatcom County.

The free one-hour concerts are scheduled for 2 p.m. each Sunday in August, beginning Aug. 7, at Peace Arch State Park, 1900 A St., Blaine. (Directions: In celebration of the Pacific Northwest’s diverse cultures, the series features music and dance performances representing communities and traditions from throughout the state: Laotian, Danish, Métis, old-time fiddle, Tex-Mex and Irish.

This summer’s performance schedule:

Aug. 7: Kinnaly Lao
The Kinnaly Lao Traditional Music & Dance Troupe is a program of the Lao Heritage Foundation-Pacific Northwest Chapter based in Seattle. The troupe comprises more than 60 second-generation Lao American youth who come together to learn, preserve, promote and share the art of traditional Lao music and dance. The youngest performer is 4-years old, and some have been dancing and performing for more than 15 years. Their training is rigorous and all the choreography is original.

Aug. 14: Three Fiddles, Three Traditions
Danish fiddler Kristian Bugge, Métis fiddler Jamie Fox and Ruthie Dornfeld—playing American old-time fiddle music—present their three distinct fiddle styles with unaccompanied solos. The three have joined forces to form an eclectic string trio. Bugge, from Denmark, plays traditional Danish tunes and demonstrates the steps to his homeland’s traditional dances. Fox, from Montana, (Gros Ventre/Métis tribes) is considered one of the best-known players of Métis fiddle music—a traditional mix of Celtic, French and Native American tunes. Ruthie Dornfeld is a master of American old-time music and will play examples of other musical styles as well.>

Aug. 21: Juan Manuel Barco y su Conjunto
Barco was born in Coal Mine, Texas, into a family of migrant farm workers who followed the crop harvests within Texas and eventually to other states such as Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Oklahoma, Arizona and California. His music incorporates all of the different styles he heard as they traveled from place to place. Barco taught himself to play the guitar at 6-years old, and later taught himself to play the bajo sexto and bass guitar. He also composed his own songs about the family migrant experience. He and his band play a lively mix of traditional Tex-Mex music and original compositions.

Aug. 28: Randal Bays and Friends
Randal Bays is an American musician who's been playing Irish fiddle for more than 30 years. He's now widely recognized as a master of that complex and ancient art—in particular, the fiddle styles of rural western Ireland. Fiddler Magazine said that Bays is “among the best Irish style fiddlers of his generation.” It’s rare for someone not born in Ireland to get that kind of acclaim. Bays has worked with some of the top Irish fiddlers, including James Keane, James Kelly, Gearoid O'hAllmhurain, Roger Landes, Martin Hayes, John Williams, Daithi Sproule and the late Michéal O'Domhnaill.

[NOTE to media: photos are available upon request.]

The concerts are free. A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to the park.

About the Folk and Traditional Arts in the Parks Program

The International Concert Series is part of a broader series of events celebrating Washington’s diverse cultural communities, presented by the Folk and Traditional Arts in the Parks Program with funding provided by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Washington State Parks Foundation.

For more information about the Folks and Traditional Arts in the Parks program, including upcoming events, visit: or contact Debbie Fant, Program Coordinator, at or 360-902-8635.

About Peace Arch Historical State Park

The 30-acre park, which lies on the boundary between the United States and Canada, is the ideal setting for this concert series, which celebrates the rich and diverse cultures of the Pacific Northwest. The day-use park is known for its lush gardens, vast lawns, panoramic views of Point Roberts and Vancouver Island and the 67-foot Peach Arch monument. For more information about the park, visit:

About Washington State Parks

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages more than 100 state parks and properties totaling approximately 120,000 acres. The Commission provides a variety of recreation opportunities for citizens and provides stewardship protection for a diverse array of natural, cultural and historic resources. State Parks’ statewide programs include long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation.

Follow Washington State Parks:

Share your favorite state park adventure on the State Parks’ blog site at

Support state parks by purchasing your annual Discover Pass today, and enjoy a whole year of outdoor fun on Washington’s beautiful state-managed recreation lands. For more information, visit

MEDIA CONTACTS:                         

Debbie Fant, (360) 902-8635
Toni Droscher, (360)

Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service: (800) 833-6388


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