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Vandalia Gathering adjusting format over COVID concerns

CHARLESTON — An annual festival highlighting West Virginia traditions is changing its format this year.

The 2021 Vandalia Gathering that usually is a three-day festival will instead be a concert from 2-4 p.m. May 29 on the north steps of the Capitol in Charleston, the state Department of Arts, Culture and History has announced.

The annual Memorial Day event, a celebration of the traditional arts, music, dance, stories, crafts and food of West Virginia, was canceled last year, too, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During this year’s concert, the 2021 Vandalia Award winner will be announced and the 2020 Vandalia Award winner also will be recognized.

The event will be free and open to the public. For those unable to attend the event, the concert will be streamed live.

All guidelines in accordance with best practices from the state Department of Health and Human Resources and the Centers for Disease Control will be followed.

Attendees are encouraged to wear a face covering and social distancing guidelines will be followed.

An awards ceremony to honor the winners for the 2021 Quilt and Wall Hangings Exhibition also will take place noon-1 p.m. May 29 in the Culture Center state theater in the Capitol Complex.

The ceremony will only be open to quiltmakers and their guests. Social distancing and facial covering guidelines will be followed.

This is the 40th year for the exhibition, which will open May 28 in the Culture Center Great Hall. The free summer-long exhibition will be displayed through Sept. 13.

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