The Washington Old Time Fiddlers Association (WOTFA) is a non-profit organization formed in 1965 to preserve and promote old time fiddling and related arts.
Who We Are
Statewide, we now have around 1100 members, arranged geographically into districts. Talented musicians range in age from 5 up into the 90's. We welcome new members (you do not have to be a musician to join). Membership benefits include the opportunity to attend the summer Fiddle Workshop, plus monthly WOTFA newsletters, which publicize all statewide activities (including shows) and the sheet music for a selected song each month. Members also gain access to the Members Only part of this website, which contains all sorts of fun ways to share our enthusiasm with each other about Old Time Fiddling.
What We Do
We are a very active organization statewide and perform at various functions (nursing homes, retirement homes, senior centers, clubs, religious groups, civic functions, etc.) throughout the year. Donations from many of these playouts are used to cover our operating expenses. Local districts host regular meetings and jams. Please check with the district you would like to visit for times and locations of monthly jam sessions and meetings in your area. These are open to the public to come and listen. We also publish several tune books and CD's. We actively support youth fiddling activities and hold our summer Kittitas Workshop every summer.
Summer Music Workshop and Campouts
The 2015 Workshop is posted - click here to check it out. We have held a week-long summer Fiddle, Guitar and Mandolin Music Workshop for many years in Kittitas, Washington, taught by nationally recognized artists.This year's workshop will be from July 13 - 17, 2015; and, it will be held in Moses Lake for the second year. Because enrollment is limited (and the workshop is extremely popular), we have used a process to prioritize registrations: the earliest date to mail your enrollment forms this year is in early April (April 6, 2015) and is posted in advance on this website and in the Evergreen Fiddler newsletter that is mailed to members. To get priority registration, you must be a member of WOTFA by January 31st of the workshop year and must postmark your registration form ON the first allowable date to send it in (and not before). We will be accepting registrations for the 2015 workshop soon. Please see the workshop page for more information about the workshop.
Campouts are weekend gatherings that several of the districts sponsor each summer. They are great opportunities to jam, socialize and learn new tunes; some even have an open band with square dancing. Please see the calendar page.
State Convention in Moses Lake, Washington
The Washington Old Time Fiddlers hold our annual convention during our summer Workshop each July. Each district sends a representative to give a report about activities in their area. You need not attend the Workshop to participate in the convention. We are a large organization and it is both interesting and heartening to hear about how districts are working to preserve and perpetuate old time music. We hope you will attend.
To carry on our tradition, we enthusiastically promote youth musicianship. Many districts have Junior Old Time Fiddlers Groups for children ages 5 to 18. Some districts offer scholarships to youth who want to attend the summer Kittitas Workshop. Some districts have a free music lesson at their meetings or sponsor free lessons from designated instructors in exchange for volunteering for the district.
Research & Archives
WOTFA promotes and conducts research on old time and traditional fiddling and maintains archives and collections. Check out our Tune of the Month page to listen and learn about some of the tunes we are playing and the people who taught them to us.