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Maryland State Arts Council Announces Winners of 2019 Maryland Traditions Heritage Awards

Maryland State Arts Council Announces Winners of 2019 Maryland Traditions Heritage Awards


Winners from St. Mary’s County, Baltimore City and Howard County

April 01, 2019Press Release

BALTIMORE, MD (April 1, 2019) - The Maryland Traditions folklife program is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Heritage Awards, given annually to outstanding stewards of Maryland’s living cultural traditions. This year’s winners are:

Person or people: Bluegrass musician and promoter Jay Armsworthy, of St. Mary’s County;
Place: Generational supporter of African American community and culture, the Arch Social Club, of Baltimore City;
Tradition: Puerto Rican percussion and dance practices of bomba and plena, as upheld by Cultura Plenera, based in Howard County.

Each winner will be honored in a ceremony hosted June 7th at the Proscenium Theatre on the campus of UMBC. The ceremony is free and open to the public, and will be a featured event at the Maryland Arts Summit, a convening of artists and arts leaders from around the state. Ticket information will be released shortly though MSAC’s website and social media accounts.

“It is always a distinct pleasure to support folklife through our Heritage Awards,” said Maryland Traditions director Chad Buterbaugh. “I invite everyone to join us on June 7th to see why Jay Armsworthy, the Arch Social Club, and Cultura Plenera make Maryland such a special place to live.”

Inspired by the work of Garrett County folklorist Dr. Alta Schrock, the Maryland Traditions Heritage Awards have been given annually since 2007 to a person or group, a place, and a tradition that exemplify outstanding stewardship of Maryland’s folklife. The Maryland Traditions program is dedicated to identifying, documenting, supporting, and presenting the state’s folklife, or community-based living cultural traditions handed down by example or word of mouth.



About MSAC

Founded in 1967, the Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) is an agency of the State of Maryland Department of Commerce, Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts, and encourages and invests in the advancement of the arts for all Marylanders. Its grants and programs support artists and arts organizations in their pursuit of artistic excellence, ensure the accessibility of the arts to all citizens, and promote statewide awareness of arts resources and opportunities. MSAC awards grants to not-for-profit, tax-exempt organizations and individual artists, and provides technical and advisory assistance to individuals and groups. The agency is funded by an annual appropriation from the State of Maryland and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. MSAC may also receive contributions from private, non-governmental sources. For more information, go to

Cutline: Bluegrass musician and promoter Jay Armsworthy of St. Mary’s County is the 2019 Heritage Award winner in the category of Person or People. Photo by Edwin Remsberg Photographs.