It started innocently enough a dozen years ago when Essex Elementary School teacher Richard Carpenter wanted to bring a folk song unit to life for his second-grade general music class.  Over the years it has grown bigger, and this year the Essex PTO funded our artist in residence, Essex native Daisy Nell, to visit the class. She will teach the young students all about folk music, folk dance and folk instruments and how they continue to play an important part of our culture, both past and present.

“At around the same time, I was taking a music course at an area college that focused on building community,” said Carpenter.  “One of the activities was a folk music night where parents and children could dance, sing, and get to know each other. The folk-dance night was such a huge success we decided to make it an annual event.”