Festivals 'n Such

Auburn Christmas Festival November 8-9
Gold Country Fairgrounds, Auburn, CA. Fine Craftwork & music, gourmet delights, delicious meals & munchies & drinks. Performers include Golden Bough, Tom Rigney & Flambeau, Joe Craven, Sourdough Slim with Robert Armstrong and more. INFO: 209-533-3473, www.fireonthemountain.com

13th Annual BACDS Fall Ball November 15
San Mateo Masonic Temple, San Mateo, CA. An evening of elegance and English Country Dance. Program: Brooke Friendly. Music: Bonfire—Charlie Hancock, Shira Kammen, Jim Oakden. Practice workshop 2:30-5 p.m. (Brooke Friendly with Anne Goess & Ruthanne Fraley). Singing at 7:30 p.m. (rounds, catches, bawdy songs with Cathleen Myers). Dancing 8-11 p.m.. Dances are briefly talked through but usually not prompted. Bring a contribution for potluck buffet after Ball. INFO: http://bacds.org/fallball

West Coast Ragtime Festival November 21-23
Red Lion Hotel, Sacramento, CA. Listening & dancing to every kind of ragtime & ragtime related music. Jamming, dance instruction, seminars, open piano, piano lessons, Ragtime Collectors Exchange. INFO: 916-457-3324, www.westcoastragtime.com/08wcrf-home.htm

Vancouver Folk Song Society Retreat Nov 21-23
Camp Alexandra, near White Rock, BC, Canada. Join us for a weekend of: Sharing songs from many lands & traditions, socializing & fine food, workshops, jamming, presentations, song circles, concert. Children welcome! Register by Nov. 13. INFO: 604-251-5341, www.folksongsociety.org

Sea Shanty Camp November 21-24
Fort Flagler, near Port Townsend, WA. Classes about instructors' shipboard experiences; practical demonstrations of how shanties corresponded to specific shipboard work; LOTS of participative singing; and a Shanty Concert. INFO: 509-996-3527, www.seashantycamp.com

Monterey Cowboy Poetry & Music Fest Dec 5-7
Monterey, CA. Performers include: Mike Beck, Patty Clayton; Juni Fisher; Lindsey, Yuen & Kini—Hawaiian Paniolos; Lone Prairie; Sourdough Slim; and Dave Stamey. Western dance with The Stardust Cowboys. Poets include: Baxter Black, Linda Kirkpatrick, Wallace McRae, Jay Snider, Paul Zarzyski. INFO: 800-722-9652 www.montereycowboy.org

Annual BACDS No-Snow Ball December 6
7:30-11:30 p.m.. Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Ascension, Oakland. A great tradition. Santa Claus & Karen Fa-la-lantana with Winter FoG (Fear of Guppies): Kathrine Gardner, Craig Johnson, Charlie Hancock, Jim Oakden, Craig Johnson; and Cathie Whitesides. Festive dress encouraged. INFO: www.bacds.org/events

Encuentro del Canto Popular December 7-8
Brava Theater, San Francisco. Many of the world's foremost composers and performers of el canto y musica popular. INFO: 415-648-1045, www.accionlatina.org/encuentro/

Blythe Bluegrass Music Festival January 16-18
Colorado River Fairgrounds, Blythe CA. Featuring: Rhonda Vincent & the Rage, Daily & Vincent, Danny Paisley & the Southern Grass, Cedar Hill, and many more. Ideal weather, camping, international food, crafts, Bluegrass Quilter's Quilt Show, Husband Calling contest. INFO: 760-922-8166, www.blythebluegrass.com

Women's Hearts & Hands Guitar Camp Jan 16-19
Mendocino, CA. Guitar instruction for women by women in a supportive, beautiful environment. Beginner-Advanced. Blues, Jazz, Fingerstyle, Celtic, Brazilian, Chord Theory, Alternate Tunings. Performance opportunities. Delicious, nutritious catered meals. INFO: 415-669-7447, www.womensheartsandhands.com

Listening Room Intl. Songwriters Retreat Jan 18-25
Sequoia Retreat Center, Big Sur, CA. Intimate, intensive week of co-writing, networking and develop.m.ent of craft. Daily workshop sessions, assigned co-writing partnerships, and evening song sharing circles. Open to writers at all levels of develop.m.ent. INFO: www.listeningroomretreats.com

WinterSongs West 2009 January 23-26
Camp Ocean Pines, Cambria, CA. A full weekend of songwriting, singing, performance, guitar and harmony classes with Penny Nichols, David Roth, Hawaiian slack key guitar great Patrick Lendeza, Joyce Woodson, Kenny Edwards, Rebecca Troon, Dale Laduke, and Severin Browne. INFO: 845-750-6871, P.O Box 803 Saugerties, NY 12477, www.summersongs.com

Dance Awakening April 10-12
Harbin Hot Springs, outside Calistoga, CA. Contra dancing, great music and calling, workshops, hot springs. Caller: Rick Mohr, band: The Figments. Registrations close in November of previous year; lottery system due to popularity. INFO: 805-649-5189, www.danceawakening.com.