Dulcimer Days draws people from all across America

| June 17, 2016

013COSHOCTON – The soothing sounds of dulcimers can be heard this weekend at Coshocton’s Dulcimer Days Festival in Roscoe Village today, Friday, June 17 through Sunday, June 19. Performers and instructors from all over the country come to teach and hear the good old Appalachian music during the 42nd annual event. The festival features workshops, private lessons, jam sessions, a concert on Saturday night at Roscoe United Methodist Church at 7 p.m., and the Mid-East Regional Dulcimer Championship at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

“A lot of people who come to the festival come to participate or listen to other people who play the instrument,” said Louise Cardenzana, secretary/treasurer of the event. “I hope to encourage people to come just to listen and find out more about the instrument.”

There are two types of dulcimers: the hammer dulcimer and the mountain or Appalachian dulcimer. The mountain dulcimer has four strings and is played like a guitar where the hammer dulcimer is a trapezoid-shaped instrument that the performer strikes with a mallet. Both can be amplified, which is mostly used when performing in front of large groups. The hammer dulcimer is an ancient instrument and there are forms of it found all over the world. The mountain dulcimer has its roots in Appalachian America.

“I find a lot of people that play the dulcimer, they are professional people and it’s a hobby, but it’s also a passion for them,” said Cardenzana. “When they get the chance, they want to get better at playing them, and the people who take the private lessons here just love them.”

There are several vendors set up at the festival selling t-shirts, CDs, sheet music, psalteries, dulcimers, wooden shakers, jewelry, and other items. The t-shirts are sold as a fundraiser and a raffle will be held on Sunday, both to help keep the festival going for next year. Many local businesses also gave donations.

Dulcimer Days used to be held at Lake Park, and then moved to the downtown area on Main Street and workshops were held in the Presbyterian Church. A few years ago, the festival moved to Roscoe Village and workshops are now held in COTC.

“Over the years, the festival has grown for us in the sense that instructors and performers want to come here and be a part of this every year,” said Cardenzana.

She said that people from all over the country come to the festival each year. Oklahoma, Texas, and Florida are just some of the states represented at the event.

David and Annette Lindsey are just one of the vendors who were at the festival and have been there for at least 10 years.

“We enjoy the people,” said Annette. “It’s a great bunch of friendly people who run the festival and we love the historical area. It’s a great place for the festival.”

The complete schedule of events is below:


Workshops 1 – 5 p.m. (COTC) (college)

Mini-concerts: 1 – 7 p.m.

Traditional Jam : 7 – 10 p.m. (in COTC -Rm. 150 and  parlor)



Workshops: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (COTC (college)

Mini-concerts: 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Jam sessions: all day throughout the village

Headliner Concert: 7 p.m. at Roscoe United Methodist Church



Gospel sing: 11 a.m.

Jam sessions: All Day

Mid-East Regional Dulcimer Championships   1 p.m.

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About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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