October 18, 2019

Bring ALL of your instruments (for Band Scramble)!

Come one, come all–ANY and ALL instruments are welcome in our Festival Band Scramble! It’s NOT just for dulcimers.

If you’re not familiar with this Festival event, read about it (Band Scramble) and you’ll see that’s it’s a lot of fun! Basically it’s ad hoc performing groups. You get assigned to a group. The groups meet and organize themselves, pick a tune, practice, and then perform their tunes the next day for Festival attendees. All levels of players are invited to participate—from Absolute Beginner to Advanced.

It’s a great opportunity to meet and play music with other Festival attendees, AND an opportunity to stretch your skills.

And if you’re a bit hesitant about “performing” on stage, you couldn’t ask for a more receptive audience than our Festival attendees. Besides, you’ll be part of a group—you can shine or “hide” as much as you’re comfortable with.

See you soon at the Festival!

Festival concerts open to the public (tickets available at the door)

Each day of the festival is capped off by an Evening Concert featuring our guest artists and our local instructors/performers—with a finale performer jam that blows the roof off!

Tickets to these concerts are included in Festival attendees’ registration fee.

But the concerts are also open to the public. Tickets can be purchased at the door: Adults: $15; Students/children: $10.

Come join us. You will hear some very sweet and some very rockin’ music!

Plan out your Festival days now (schedules & workshop descriptions)

Wow, we’re getting close to Festival time!

To give you a head start, take a look at the final Festival schedules (in pdf format) and workshop descriptions. (NOTE: These will all also be in your registration packets at the Festival.)

You can print these out and use them to plan your Festival days now.

  • 2017 overall daily Festival Schedule
  • Detailed Schedule Grids (HD grid or MD grid) with workshop title, instructor’s name, and venue room number; listed by time slot, and color-coded by skill level
  • Workshop Descriptions listed by instructor and skill level

A map of the venue will be available at the Festival. You can also ask for directions at the Registration Desk at any time, or ask a Festival volunteer.

Enroll Now in Pre-Festival Classes with our 2016 Guest Artists

Pre-Festival Classes take place the day before the Festival opens. For 2016, these classes will be held from 1–4 p.m. on Thursday, February 4, at the Festival Venue.

The topics of the 2016 Pre-Festival Classes are:

  • Presented by Steve Schneider (HD):
    “Practice is not a four-letter word: 
    A Practical Guide to Helping You to Become a Better Hammered Dulcimer Player and a Happier and More Fulfilled Person”
  • Presented by Aubrey Atwater (MD):
    “From Nice to Gorgeous”

These classes are optional and are NOT included in your Festival registration. You need to enroll with and send payment to the instructor.

For more information, see Pre-Festival Classes.

Registration Assistance Available for 2016 Festival

This Festival exists to promote a vibrant and growing community of Dulcimer players and enthusiasts, including those for whom the Festival’s cost is a challenge.

Festival organizers may be able to waive a portion of the registration fee for applicants who qualify. To apply for a partial fee waiver, you need not be an accomplished musician; financial need and dedication to learning to play your Dulcimer are the only requirements.

For more information, see Festival Registration Fee Assistance.

Our thanks to Steve Eulberg of Dulcimer Crossing for his donation enabling this financial assistance. According to Steve, his goal is: “In order to help continue the tradition of equipping students of the dulcimer and raising up more mountain dulcimer teachers in Colorado.”


Steve was the founder of the Colorado Dulcimer Festival. And even though his website, Dulcimer Crossing, offers online lessons for learning the Hammered Dulcimer or Mountain Dulcimer, he says he absolutely supports face-to-face, hands on learning like at our Festival. (For more information, go to the Dulcimer Crossing website.)

Tina Gugeler: 2015 National Hammered Dulcimer Champion

Tina Gugeler, one of the Festival’s local performers and instructors, has won the National Hammered Dulcimer Championship at the 44th Annual Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas.

This makes 7 total wins for Tina at Winfield: 2 First Place, 3 Seconds, and 2 Thirds.

Three of our instructors have won First, Second, and/or Third Place multiple times at the National Hammered Dulcimer and Mountain Dulcimer Championships: Karen Alley, Bonnie Carol, and Tina. Karen was the 2014 National Hammered Dulcimer Champion. So Colorado has had First Place winners for two years in a row.

Tina received a trophy and a Master Works Russell Cook Extended Range Hammered Dulcimer RCEXR 17/17.

Our hearty congratulations to Tina. Well done!

Tina Gugelar champ

(That’s Tina in the middle.)

Held annually each year on the 3rd weekend in September, the Walnut Valley Festival is the home of the International Autoharp Championship, the International Fingerstyle Guitar, the National Mountain Dulcimer, the National Flat Pick Guitar Championship, the National Hammered Dulcimer Championship and the National Bluegrass Banjo Championship. Other contests held at the Walnut Valley Festival are the National Mandolin Championship and the Walnut Valley Old Time Fiddle

Special Rate for Festival Lodging

We’ve made arrangements with the following hotel close to the Festival Venue to provide a block of rooms at a discounted rate for Festival attendees. The hotel is within a 10-minute drive from the venue, is smoke-free, and offers complimentary hot breakfasts.

When you make your reservation . . .

  • You must identify yourself as a Colorado Dulcimer Festival participant to get the discounted rate.
  • You  must book your room before the hotel’s discount rate cutoff date. 

Comfort Suites Lakewood
7260 West Jefferson Avenue
Lakewood, CO 80235

Discount rate:

Single King $79/night up to 3 people;

Double Queen $89/night up to 5 people.

All rooms have sofa sleeper bed.

Rates valid for Thursday night 1/31 – Saturday night 2/2.

Discount rate cutoff date: 1/15/19

For more information, see their website.

2016 Festival Registration Is Open!!

Click on the green Register Now button on the right side of any page of this website, select your payment method (PayPal/credit card OR check), and fill out the registration form.

If you  have any questions or run into any problems registering, please Contact us.

Get ready: 2016 registration opens September 1st, 2015!!

Where does the time go?!

It seems like just last week we were playing beautiful music and learning new skills at the 2015 Festival—with some of us even enjoying a class outside in the sun and warm temperatures.

In Colorado. In February!

But here we are now, enjoying Colorado’s warm and sunny summer (oh, and some rain—like a lot! but great for our beautiful environment). And it will soon be time to register for the 2016 Festival.

The Festival “Crew” is kicking into high gear, preparing to create another fun Festival in 2016. (Read about the Crew in Past, Present, and Future.) We’ll be at the same great venue, having lots of workshops and jams, and evening concerts by our Guest and Local instructors/performers, and good healthy onsite meals.

So put it on your calendar:

September 1: “Register for the Festival”

Register early and take advantage of the Early Bird registration discount.


Thank you, everybody!

The 2015 Colorado Dulcimer Festival was a phenomenal success—and A LOT of fun!

The classes and performances given by our Guest Artists and local instructors and performers were amazing. The performer jams at the end of each evening concert almost lifted the roof off. And concert attendance far exceeded all previous years—thus introducing Hammered Dulcimer and Mountain Dulcimer music to a whole new audience.

Since this was our first year moving down from Ft. Collins, our new venue at St. James Presbyterian Church and our new Denver location in Littleton were an unknown to us, but turned out to be excellent.
(Our sincere gratitude to the church staff.)

Festival attendance exceeded previous years—with a lot of Absolute Beginners and Beginners joining our ranks. And some attendees from around the country, expanding our Colorado dulcimer community nationally.

Our new caterer provided a delicious and healthy food buffet, served in the expansive hall that enabled us to spread out and mingle.

Oh, and we should thank Mother Nature for the astounding warm weather—holding workshops outside in the sun in February?! None of that usual white stuff, except for white puffy clouds in the blue sky.

So what now? Well, onto 2016, of course! We’ve already lined up out Guest Artists: Steve Schneider (HD) with Paul Oorts, and Aubrey Atwater (MD).

Registration is closed now but will open on September 1st, 2015.

In the meantime, enjoy your spring and summer. We’ll be in touch as registration draws near.