Yankee Doodle Dulcimer: Lagniappe Dulcimer Fête 2017

Welcome to our music festival. “Yankee Doodle Dulcimer” is the theme of our 2017 Lagniappe Fete. Yankee Doodle comes to the bayous and swamps of Louisiana in a pirogue pulled by an alligator playing the drums, fife and dulcimer!. We will have a good time! A grand time. The planning is underway and our performers are selected.table-basket-2-img_1351_1Here is information about our dulcimer festival/conference filled with workshops, concerts, vendors and jamming. Folks come from all over Louisiana and the country to our festivals in March each year. We have workshops for many acoustic and folk instruments in addition to dulcimer.

16th Annual Lagniappe Dulcimer Fête
March 9-12, 2017
West Baton Rouge Community Center
And West Baton Rouge Museum


The theme of our 2017 festival is “Yankee Doodle Dulcimer.”  We have planned a fun array of events to celebrate a patriotic theme and music blended with the bayous and Cajun culture of Louisiana.quilt-fabric-img_1344_1

The extensive flooding in August in our area did not impact the festival grounds and buildings; we are planning a fête that is larger than ever – with 72 workshops on mountain and hammered dulcimer and other acoustic instruments.

Mountain Dulcimer Instructors

We have lined up another stellar cast of featured workshop leaders and performers including mountain dulcimer instructors

  • Dana Gruber,
  • Aaron O’Rourke,
  • Carol Walker,
  • Pam Weeks and
  • Margaret Wright

Irish, Manx, fiddle, waltz, jazz, contemporary music are on the schedule as well as techniques and skills.

Vendors as slated to teach mountain dulcimer workshops, too.

  • Denise Guillory,
  • Gary Sager,
  • Annette Lindsey,
  • Dottie Shephard,

Special tribute to our veterans

Since we are having  a patriotic theme, we plan to recognize our veterans and those who served in the armed forces who are attending our fete. We will contact you, once registered, and ask for your rank, years of service, awards and a photo. We will assemble these into a poster and will recognize the names during a concert.

Special activities include


  • Afternoon extended workshop for Beginner/Novice dulcimer players with Margaret Wright,
  • Thursday afternoon multi-instrument orchestra with Lagniappe member Lisa Oivanki. She has obtained permission to orchestrate the song, “River, Take Me Along,” by Bill Staines. It is one of the most beautiful and poignant songs ever written, in my opinion.
  • Thursday afternoon 3rd Annual Louisiana State Dulcimer Championship. It is for amateur’s (not sanctioned by Winfield), so come show us your talent! Rules and deadlines are on our WEB site.
  • Thursday afternoon — A taste of Louisiana cuisine with boudin balls, fried alligator and crawfish pies.
  • Thursday night extravaganza concert with a patriotic theme including our performers, Lagniappe members and crowning a new king and queen.

Other Acoustic Instruments and music

For hammered dulcimer players:

  • If you have always wanted to learn the hammered dulcimer, Steve Heiser will teach extended workshops Friday and Saturday mornings with several loaner dulcimers available (first come, first serve).
  • For intermediate hammered dulcimer players, we have a full schedule of workshops taught by vendors David Lindsey (hammered dulcimer builder), Dan Landrum (Dulcimer Players News editor), Denise Guillory (Louisiana player extraordinaire) and instructor Steve Heiser.

For fiddlers:

  • Pam Weeks from Maine is coming to teach Cajun fiddler music!

For authoharp players:

  • Charles Whitmer is coming as our autoharp workshop leader. How exited are we about this!

For guitar, ukulele, banjo and pennywhistle players, percussion and sacred harp:

  • We have a variety of workshop leaders lined up including the talented Danny Shepherd on percussion, Pam Kaster (pennywhistle), David Porter (banjo), Hank Gruber and, Steve Heiser (guitar), Dana and Hank Gruber (ukulele), Charles Whitmer (sacred harp).

Other activities and unique workshops include

Lots of jamming in each time slot including a Cajun song jam and “I didn’t know you could play that tune in a jam”.

  • TabEdit music notation software classes with Jak Stallings.
  • “Performance Critique” with Dottie and Danny Shepherd. So, put your ensemble or solo work to the test for Danny & Dottie to fine-tune.
  • “Telling a story with creativity and dulcimer music” with Lagniappe members Bonnie Guelfo and Maylee Samuels.
  • How to build a dulcimer with our dulcimer doctor Terry McCafferty.
  • How to purchase and care for a dulcimer with vendor Gary Sager.
  • A Sunday morning gospel sing ends our festival.

Concerts – There are concerts Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights as well as Friday and Saturday afternoons. Plus an open stage Saturday afternoon.

Vendors –  We have a full line-up of vendors including both a dulcimer doctor and fiddle doctor who will re-hair bows. In fact, vendor tables are sold out.

Meals – Enjoy meals catered by our new caterers, Walk-On Sport Bar and Catering and Logan Farms. Meals must be pre-ordered and pre-paid by February 18, 2017. We will again be serving complimentary breakfast at the Community Center for early risers.

T-shirt Design –   A new T-shirt design features Revolutionary Era  crawfish and animals in visiting the Louisiana bayous.

Raffle and Door  Prizes –   We promise plenty of unique raffle and door-prizes including a quilt made by Lagniappe members. The table decorations will be sold as a fund-raiser, too.

Registration and Cancellations –

There is a registration fee for musicians and family members, so go to our club website and register for the conference. Full refund (except T-shirt) if request is received by March 1, 2017,  No refunds after this date.

For questions – 

Maylee Samuels — mayleesam@aol.com or
Helen Bankston at  —  hmbankston@cox.net or
Registration Chair, Marie Varnes —  marieewv@gmail.com

We hope you plan to visit Louisiana and our festival/conference in March 2017.table-baskets-img_1357_1

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