FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Fairmont State University’s Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center hosted a spring celebration kicking off with a concert by the Kennedy Barn String Band on Thursday.

Following the performance of the band was an award ceremony along with an introduction of the Trunk of Traditional Tunes Museum Exhibit. During the awards ceremony community members were honored with the 2022 Traditions Solute and Folklife Center Achievement for Preservation Awards.

“Over the course of the last year we’ve had musicians here talking about old time or traditional Appalachian music, fiddle players, banjo players, ballad singers. And so, the students in the museum studies classes put together posters that include pictures and information about the musicians,” said Francene Kirk, interim Director of the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center

D.D. Meighen was awarded the Traditions Salute Award, acknowledging his lifelong efforts to document life in north central West Virginia through his work with TV-19, a local cable access channel. Meighen has donated his collections of interviews, local programs and documentary videos to the Folklife Center.

Also, Porter Stiles was awarded the Folklife Center Achievement Award for Preservation to acknowledge his efforts to preserve local history through material culture. Stiles is an educator, collector and Civil War enthusiast. His Civil War collection has been displayed in the Folklife Center for two years.

“COVID has been really hard on everybody and to be able to get back together and to be together at the folklife center, and to be her for no other reason but to enjoy each other’s company, and enjoy some music, and congratulate people for their achievements is really a wonderful thing, Kirk said.

The Trunk of Traditional Tunes Museum Exhibit is on display in the Ruth Ann Musick Folk Gallery. Fairmont State University Students in the museum Studies program put the display together, featuring photos and music of many West Virginia traditional musicians.