MSAC now accepting nominations for 2018 Md. Traditions Heritage Awards

The Maryland State Arts Council is now accepting nominations for the 2018 Maryland Traditions Heritage Awards.

The council’s folklife program, Maryland Traditions, created the state Heritage Awards in 2007 to recognize outstanding stewardship of Maryland’s living traditions, and three awards have been given each year since in three categories: person/people, place and tradition.


“The Heritage Awards are our way of supporting Maryland folklife in a broad way,” said Maryland Traditions Director Chad Buterbaugh. “Through its individual practitioners, but also through the community spaces and practices that keep living cultural traditions vital.”

“These people, places, and traditions make up our state’s cultural fabric,” Maryland Traditions Folklorist Ashley Minner said, “and it’s a true honor to give them this kind of public recognition.”

Past recipients include the Baltimore American Indian Center, the Sheep and Wool Festival, the Ladies Aid Society of Smith Island, and Cambodian ceremonial musician Chum Ngek.

Awards given to individuals take “research, documentation, presentation, entrepreneurship, artistry, stewardship, and community impact” into consideration, while the place award honors locations that “serve to keep traditions alive and are meaningful and effective gathering places or sites for carrying on living or endangered traditions,” according to Janine Lis, MSAC marketing and communications manager.

“The tradition award,” she said, “recognizes those that connect communities to cultural heritage in ways that exemplify Maryland’s dynamic spirit and may include events, occupations, knowledge, cultural scenes, and organizations.”

Nominations can be made using the form, which can be found at:, and will be accepted until Monday, July 30.

Awards will be presented at a public ceremony Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Proscenium Theatre at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Nominations from the public are invited.