2024 class descriptions will be updated prior to registration opening
Meanwhile, get a sense of camp with our 2023 classes

ADULT PROGRAM (ages 13+)

Session 1 9:10-10:00

Harmony Singing with Val Mindel
There is nothing quite as satisfying as voices coming together in harmony. In this class you can expect some fundamental music theory (very accessible to all!), some practice making up harmonies, vocal style tips, as well as just having fun making music together. The repertoire will be a combination of of small-group songs (traditional and country duets and trios) and big-group singing (rounds, songs for community singing). 

Irish Sets with Matthew Olwell
Descended from French quadrilles and other European social dances, Irish set dancing is a unique style of group dancing with many regional variations. It is danced most often in tight sets of four couples with percussive footwork that is smooth and close to the floor. For this class, we will focus on building a good foundation of technique and physical understanding of the form. Different steps for polkas, slides, reels, and other types of tunes make for a challenging and fun combination of rhythmic footwork and lively partner dancing. 

Latín Dance with Wendy Graham Settle

It's going to get caliente in Cumberland! We'll explore Latin dances, which may include Salsa, Cha-Cha, Merengue, and Bachata. Dale!

Session 2 10:15 - 11:05

Irish Ensemble Class with Tadhg Ó Meachair & Joanna Hyde
Come learn about Irish music! We will teach a variety of tunes, explore stylistic elements within Irish music, and arrange the tunes we learn into larger ensemble sets with accompaniment, harmony, and variation. Along the way we'll chat about how Irish music relates and/or compares to other styles of music. All instruments and levels are welcome, and we'll do our best to tailor the class to the group. Learning will be done largely by ear, but we will also provide sheet music and chord charts as needed. 

English Country Dance with Gaye Fifer
Throughout the week, we will enjoy the delicious variety of moods, music and movements that English country dancing can offer. We will focus on common figures and explore all the ways they have been used to good effect in lovely dances.

Sean-Nós Dance with Emily Oleson
In the mid-1990s Riverdance: The Show popularized a virtuosic Munster style of Irish step dance on a global scale. Sean nós, or “old style,” Irish dance is a more relaxed, lower-impact percussive dance form, more social and less formally competitive than some more publicized forms of step dance. Emily has trained with sean nós dance instructors who have emphasized musicality, personal style, and tidy footwork that remains “close to the floor.” While not a subject matter expert or a native Irish speaker, Emily had been studying this “neat and tidy” dance form since 2012, and has attended workshops and intensives with a variety of instructors including Malden Meehan, Keiran Jordan, Brian O’Hairt, Brian Cunningham, the Devane brothers, Shannon Dunne, Megan Downes, Kate Spanos, Rebecca McGowan and Jackie O’Riley. 

TEENS* (ages 13-18)
*Teens participate in the adult program throughout the day, with one special teens only class offered just for them.
Join the Band with Val Mindel
We will also trade lead and follow, making us more attuned and responsive partners and creating a more democratic dance space. A string band class for teens with an emphasis on singing and arranging songs to accommodate a variety of instruments. We'll learn a handful of songs from the Southern American old-tims, early country and bluegrass traditions and create arrangements around those songs. Expect to sing a lot, to step out on whatever you play and to go home with some songs you'll want to add to your repertoire.

Session 3 11:20 - 12:10

Old-Time Singing and String Band with Val Mindel
In this class, we'll learn some great old-time stringband tunes (and possibly some songs as well, depending on who comes to the class), primarily from West Virginia. All instruments are welcome (fiddle, banjo, mandolin, guitar, bass). To get the most out of the class, participants should have some experience learning tunes by ear, but we will tailor the speed of learning to the folks who come.

Contra Course with Gaye Fifer and participants
A contra hour with Calling Course participants calling and teaching dances.
Come enjoy great contras to excellent music from Brian Lindsay, Jonathan Whitall, and Eric Schedler. 

Partner Dance Skills with Matthew Olwell and Emily Oleson
In this class we will work with ideas of flow, groundedness, and connection to enhance our partnering technique. We’ll explore exercises in spatial awareness, gravity, momentum, and connectivity as ways to fine-tune our social dance skillset. Learning to use these elements effectively and adapt your movement to each partner is a process of discovering yourself and "listening" with more than just your ears. We will also trade lead and follow, making us more attuned and responsive partners and creating a more democratic dance space.

Intergenerational 1:30 - 2:30

Callers' Course with Gaye Fifer
This Course is a workshop designed for intermediate callers. The focus is on two important topics: teaching skills (understanding choreography and building a concise teaching vocabulary) and stage craft (improving performance presence and vocal skills, and collaborating with musicians). All of this takes place in a supportive environment designed to help participants discover their strengths and explore new ideas. We cover such topics as teaching figures, recognizing good choreography, understanding effective walk-throughs and inspiring confidence in your dancers. There will also be hands-on experience when Course participants practice calling/teaching dances. This will be followed by dancer critique using a safe and supportive feedback model.  

Needle Felting (7+) with Beth Harvey
Explore sculpture and art using wool! Needle felting is an easy and satisfying art form to begin, with lots of methods and detail to continue exploring. From whimsical to realistic the possibilities are endless and the clean up is easy. We’ll work through some projects together while you create your own Cumberland artwork to take home. Needle felting takes some fine motor skills and patience.  Ages 7-10 please bring a helper.

Dance Band (9+) with Brian Lindsay and Eric Schedler
Join Brian Lindsay and Eric Schedler for Dance Band, where we learn and arrange tunes to play for the grand march, contra and waltz on the last night of camp.  All instruments welcome, with proficiency to learn and play some fun and simple tunes. 

Parade Art! (all ages) with Sam Bartlett
Using my favorite resource in the world, cardboard, we will make hats, masks, and large animals and other parade-able beings.  All ages, but under 8 with a parent or helper. 

Mummer's Play (9+) with Emily Oleson and Meg Dedolph
Mummers' Plays are a super fun and comic folk theater tradition from the British Isles, although with a complicated history. You may know some of the familiar stock characters - such as Saint George, the Doctor and the Dragon. Everyone is welcome to come and have fun with us as we flip this dramatic form on its head and play at creating our own play.  


Ritual with Kappy Laning
Description coming soon!

Dance/Rhythm with Matthew Olwell
Percussive dance is all about using your feet as rhythm instruments! In this class we'll learn some fun grooves and steps and find ways to connect them to different pieces of music. We will become drummers with our feet, and experiment with movement vocabulary drawn from a few different forms of percussive dance. 

Social Couples Dance with Wendy Graham Settle
We're partnering up for couples social dance, that may include Waltz, Swing, and Latin. Let's dance!


Craft with Marliss Brockington
Description coming soon!

Ritual Dance with Kappy Laning
Description coming soon!

Musical Exploration with Tadhg Ó Meachair & Joanna Hyde
Let's have some musical fun as we learn a few lullabies, folk songs and simple melodies, explore dance and rhythmic activities, and play a variety of musical games. Please bring along any instruments at home that you would like to try out, and we will go on an adventure!

CHILDGROVE PROGRAM (ages 2-6, 0-2 welcome with adult)

Musical Movement and Play with Meg Dedolph
We will sing, dance, and play each day sharing and learning songs, stories, and poems. Bring a favorite toy or story to share.

Outdoor Explore with Stacy Blair
Let your hair down while creating sand and rock empires, splashing in the creek, frolicking on the lawn or observing critters (possibilities from armadillos to tiny tree frogs to swallows nests) with a great group of friends.

Craft with Stacy Blair
Tap into your creative side by using bits of nature to make fun art. Focused on natural materials that can easily be returned to the earth, or recyclable materials. We will build little treasures and also something to share with our friends at camp.


Skill Swap
Community lead workshops or class sessions. Could be anything!- an afternoon of games, crafting an art project, discussion on dance communities, foraging for mushrooms, slow jams, swapping clogging steps, a round of rounds, etc. Go to a pick-up class from a world class folkie and/or take a class from an 8 year old. Maybe you'll lead, maybe you'll choose your own adventure.

Camp Activities
Swimming in a cool swimming hole with slide and beach area is offered every afternoon. Another camp activity is offered alongside swim time. Examples of potential offerings are axe throwing, ziplining, boating, giant swing, climbing wall, etc. These activities are all overseen by NaCoMe camp counselors. 

We come together toward the end of our day to share in song, skit, story, comedy, performance, talents, special moments, joy, harmony, readings, and.... announcements! Not to be missed. What might you share?

Community Dance
Easy, lively, fun dances for ALL ages.
On July 4th we will have a campfire gathering instead of community dance.

Evening Dance
A variety of dance forms (Contras, Squares, English, and more). Led by staff callers.

Late-Night Dancing (teens & adults)
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings in a variety of forms