Clog America, Utah's international folklore festival ensemble, has just finished participating in the 44th annual Beskidy Highlanders' Week of Culture in Zywiec, Poland. At the festival, the group captured the award for "Expressive Presentation of Program in Music and Dance," one of only six awards given out.
In presenting the award, festival director Anna Stachowska noted that "every festival has a star, and the star of this festival is Clog America."
Also receiving recognition at the Week of Culture celebration was Mary Bee Jensen, former director of the Brigham Young University Folkdancers. Jensen was introduced to the audience at the closing performances as a "living legend of folkdancing."
The Beskidy is the third festival where Clog America has represented the United States this summer. The group also participated in folkdance fests in Quartu Sant'Elena and Ittiri, Sardinia, Italy, in July, and will be going on to the 39th International Festival of Folklore Aviano-Piancavallo, also held in Italy.
The tour company consists of 27 dancers and nine musicians from Utah, Idaho and Wyoming.
While in Poland, members of the troupe also delivered hundreds of blankets, winter hats, gloves, scarves and coats, and dozens of school kits, newborn kits and hygiene kits to a local children's home, Dom Dziecka in Bielsko-Biala. That, too, was their third humanitarian visit this summer. Previous donations were made in Italy.