The Folklore Society of Greater Washington

Furthering the understanding, investigation, appreciation, and performance of the traditional folk music and folklore of the American people.

The FSGW Annual Getaway

A Weekend of Music, Fun and Friendship

If you love good music and good fellowship, you'll love the Getaway! Each year we gather at a beautiful waterfront site on an inlet of the Chesapeake for a weekend of music-making and fun with old friends and new, including a fine line-up of special guests. One of our friends from California has described the Getaway as a gathering of musicians, with all attendees being "just folks," whether they are professional musicians or shower singers. We gather at the West River Conference Center, West River, MD. It has heated facilities and flat terrain, and is on the shores of an inlet of the Chesapeake Bay. West River is a lovely spot with lots of inviting places to jam or sing, from first light to the wee hours.

Sally Rogers

Sally Rogers

David Jones

David Jones

Larry Kaplan

Larry Kaplan

Steve Cormier

Steve Cormier

Geoff Kaufman

Geoff Kaufman

We have an exceptional lineup of Special Guests this year. We're delighted to welcome Sally Rogers, a marvelous songwriter and singer of traditional and contemporary songs. British-born David Jones presents music-hall songs, stories, sea songs and ballads that will make you laugh or melt your heart. Larry Kaplan is a fine guitarist and singer-songwriter with a maritime bent. If you like songs of cowboys and other working people, Steve Cormier will fill the bill. Geoff Kaufman, a shanty-man at Mystic Seaport, will share songs of the Northeast and the sea. Saro Lynch-Thomason comes to us from Asheville, NC, with lots of Appalachian ballads and regional songs. And to top it all off, the trio Bare Bones (Bill and Rebecca Kimmons and their "spare rib" Dock Cutlip) will bring us exquisite harmonies and gospel songs. All of these folks will be performing in mini concerts and participating in lots of workshops.

Saro Lynch-Thomason

Saro Lynch-Thomason

Bare Bones

Bare Bones

The weekend starts off on Friday evening with a pot-luck supper and a big open sing. Saturday and Sunday we have a full program of informal participatory workshops, mini-concerts, song circles, and jam sessions, with 3 or 4 (and sometimes 5) events occurring simultaneously, so there's always plenty to choose from. Each evening we have sign-up concerts - a chance to show us all what you can do - and lots of spontaneous songfests and jam sessions at all hours. There are CDs and some instruments and crafts for sale, and a silent auction to benefit our scholarship fund - bring an item to donate and take a different one home!

We're hoping to encourage more folks to bring their kids (or grandkids) and want to plan appropriate activities for them, so do let us know in advance how many children you'll be bringing, and their ages.

50 bedrooms in buildings with heat and AC, up to four bunks in a room (discount offered if you'll take an upper bunk; if you cannot take one, please let us know). Hot showers. Tents and RVs are OK, but no hookups available. Public gathering areas and some bedrooms are handicapped accessible. Special dietary needs may be accommodated if you let us know in advance.

Limited kitchen facilities (fridge, freezer, microwave) are available to us at all times. No smoking is permitted indoors, and we are asked not to bring any alcohol.

What to bring:
Along with voices, instruments, and your love of music, bring bedding, pillows, towels, soap, flashlight, and a coffee mug to help save paper. No pets, please.

Rates and Registration: The registration form lists the 2016 rates. Rates are for one, two, or three nights, and for day-trippers who bring their own food. To dine at the Getaway buffet you MUST register in advance. If you register for two nights, the fee covers three meals each day and a late-night snack both Saturday and Sunday. A three-night registration gives you an additional night's lodging and breakfast on Monday morning. A one-night registration gives you all meals and snacks on either Saturday or Sunday and, if you wish, a bed on either adjacent night.

Here's a printable registration form.

Here's this year's schedule. It is quite firm at this point, but subject to change.

Here's a link to a map of the camp. Here is another one that is in color and is interactive, but it doesn't identify all of the cabins.

Registering two or more? Family memberships cost $45, so it might be cheaper to join FSGW.

2017 Getaway

Friday Sep 15, 2017 at 4:00 PM through Sep 18, 2017 at 11:00 AM
United Methodist West River Center (West River,MD)

Registration is not open yet.

Camp Information for
United Methodist West River Center
Driving Directions:
Driving Directions from the Washington Beltway (I-495):

From the North side/Montgomery County, etc.:

Beltway to Exit 19A (US 50 East)
Follow US 50 East toward Annapolis for 11.3 miles
Take Exit 16 (MD 424) South toward Davidsonville
Follow MD 424 for 3.7 miles.
Continue across MD 214 East (Central Avenue) onto Birdsville Rd
Follow Birdsville Rd 2.9 miles to (MD-2) Solomons Island Rd
Turn right on Solomons Island Rd 0.2 miles to Mill Swamp Rd (1st left)
Turn left on Mill Swamp Rd and go 1.7 miles to (MD 468 E) Muddy Creek Rd
Turn right on Muddy Creek Rd 5.8 mile to Chalk Point Rd
Turn left onto Chalk Point Rd
Camp entrance is 0.9 miles on the left (5100 Chalk Point Road)

From the South side/Virginia, Wilson Bridge, etc.:

Beltway to Exit 11A (MD 4 South/East, Pennsylvania Avenue) toward Upper Marlboro.
Follow MD 4 past Upper Marlboro for 11,6 miles.
Then take MD-258 East toward Bristol / Deale / Mt. Zion for 7.2 miles.
Turn left onto MD 256 (Deale-Churchton Rd.), and follow MD 256 for 1.7 miles,
Then left onto MD 468 (Muddy Creek Rd.) for 0.1 miles.
Turn right onto Chalk Point Rd.
Camp entrance is 0.9 miles on the left (5100 Chalk Point Road).

From Baltimore and BWI:

Use I-97 South to Annapolis.
Where I-97 meets US 301 East, follow signs to MD 665, Aris T. Allen Blvd.
MD 665 1.5 miles to the exit for MD 2 (Solomon\'s Island Rd.)
MD 2 South towards Edgewater.
MD 2 South for 3.7 miles.
Left turn onto MD 214 (Central Avenue) East.
MD 214 East for 1.4 miles.
Then turn right on MD 468 South (Muddy Creek Rd).
Follow Muddy Creek Rd for 8.2 miles,
Turn left onto Chalk Point Rd.
Camp entrance is 0.9 miles on the left (5100 Chalk Point Road).

For More Information Please Contact
FSGW Getaway Coordinator, Charlie Baum
706 Bonifant St.
Silver Spring,MD 20910
Home Phone (+): 301-589-6855
Home 301-587-2286 Work 202-334-1701

Payment Notes

If you need a scholarship or price break, contact Charlie Baum, head of the Scholarship Committee. If you need to pay in foreign currency, and don't wish to register on-line, we may be able to make arrangements through Camsco Music .

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