Kingston Ukraine Folklore Festival

Neotraditional Ukrainian folk band Vohon performing at the Lviv Pavilion, Ukraine Folklore Festival. Volodymyr Kish

Volodymyr Kish for New Pathway – Ukrainian News, Toronto.

The Kingston area does not have a large Ukraine population compared to most other Ontario towns and cities. According to the last census in 2016, there were only some 3,500 people claiming Ukrainian origins. Nonetheless, for 49 years in a row now, every spring the Ukrainian community here has put on quite a show at the region’s Folklore Festival. This year was no different. Over the three days of the festival, thousands of people filled the Lviv Pavilion at the Regiopolis Notre Dame High School to take in the exhibits, indulge in fine Ukrainian food, and revel in Ukrainian music and dance featuring the Maky dance ensemble from Kingston as well as the guest performing Odesa dance group from Oshawa.

The event is organized by the Ukrainian Canadian Club of Kingston, led by the well-known Lubomyr Luciuk, a professor at Kingston’s prestigious Royal Military College. His sister Nadia Luciuk looks after the artistic and entertainment side of the festival. She has been the director of the local Maky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble since its formation in 1970. The group includes dancers of all ages from five to fifty plus. The energy and stamina required is aptly demonstrated by the fact that they perform twelve shows over the course of the festival weekend.

As well as the entertainment, the Lviv pavilion showcased a large display of Ukrainian art, folk artifacts, costumes and embroidery. Attendees were also able to purchase Ukrainian art, souvenirs and embroidery from an array of vendors.