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Exploring North Carolina Through Festivals

photo of 'The Dude Abides Party'
Ashley Sue Bullers/North Carolina Museum of Art
The 4th Annual Big Lebowski 'The Dude Abides Party' offers oversized lawn bowling.

Summer is here and so are summer festivals. While big events like MerleFest or the National Folk Festival get much of the attention, many smaller festivals scattered throughout the state highlight the varied cultural communities in North Carolina.

Host Frank Stasio talks with festival organizers about this summer’s lineup, from the Highland Games in the west to the Yam Festival in the east.

Andrea Lawson, community engagement director with the North Carolina Arts Council's African-American Heritage Commission, and Molly Matlock, performing arts manager at the North Carolina Museum of Art, discuss some of the largest and smallest festivals in the state.

Stasio continues the conversation with Frank Vance, former director of the Highland Games in Linville, N.C.; Jan Parson, organizer of the Barbecue on the Neuse Festival in Kinston, N.C.; and Billy Roy, president of the Yam Festival in Tabor City, N.C.

Will Michaels is WUNC's Weekend Host and Reporter.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.