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Carden wins Brown-Hudson Folklore Award

Author, storyteller and playwright Gary Carden of Sylva has been awarded the Brown-Hudson Folklore Award presented by the North Carolina Folklore Society.

The Brown-Hudson Folklore Award was established in 1970 to honor two distinguished folklorists and officers of the North Carolina Folklore Society: Frank C. Brown of Duke University and Arthur Palmer Hudson of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Both had served as the Society’s secretary / treasurer — Brown from 1913 to 1944 and Hudson from 1945 to 1966. Hudson was also the founder and editor until 1966 of North Carolina Folklore.

The North Carolina Folklore Society presents the Brown-Hudson Folklore Award to persons who have in special ways contributed to the appreciation, continuation, or study of North Carolina folk traditions.

Carden’s most recent book, Mason Jars in the Flood, was the winner of the Appalachian Writers Association’s Book of the Year award. Carden currently writes guest columns in several Western North Carolina newspapers and is a regular book reviewer and contributor to The Smoky Mountain News. Carden is also a storyteller and has collected mountain folklore for decades.

Carden was nominated by Elizabeth Westall and Neal Hutcheson, who both have worked with Carden’s plays. Westall has played the lead in most of most of Carden’s works, including her role as the grandmother in “The Raindrop Waltz,” Nance Dude in “Nance Dude,” and Birdell in “Birdell.”

Previous recipients of the award include Freeman Owle, Sheila Kay Adams, and Orville Hicks.

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