MARQUETTE – According to Robert Railey of Marquette, the place to be to watch Finnish folk dance will be Lakeview Arena on Saturday, Aug. 13.

            Railey, the coordinator of the folk dancing programming at the Finn Grand Fest 2005 (Aug. 10-14), said that folk dancing performances will take place throughout the festival, but will featured from 1:45 to 4 p.m. that afternoon when four dance groups from Canada and two from the United States present a formal concert.  Additionally, the groups will be joined by other individual folk dancers whose groups are not attending in large enough numbers to perform separately.

            Teachers from three visiting groups are scheduled to give dance workshops from 9 a.m. until noon Friday and at 10:45 a.m. Saturday. The Friday sessions are in Northern’s PEIF dance studio and soft soled shoes are required. The session at 11 a.m. is for youths aged 6 to 12.  The Saturday workshop is at Lakeview Arena. 

            “These workshops are free of any additional charge to all registered festival participants,” said Railey, a longtime leader of the Marquette Folk Dancers group, which practices folk dances of many ethnic traditions and performs at area events. 

            Folk dancing will also be part of Wednesday’s Opening Ceremony, Friday’s Finn Hall Variety Show, both at Lakeview Arena, and Sunday’s Closing Ceremony at the Superior Dome.

            There will also be appearances of four folk dance groups Thursday through Saturday on the stage in the tori (marketplace) in the Superior Dome.

            The Opening and Closing Ceremonies are free and open to the general public.  The Finn Hall Variety Show requires a ticket. The marketplace is free for festival registrants and open to the general public for a $2 per day admission charge.  A full schedule and list of ticket prices is available at

Prepared By
John Kiltinen