Past Meetup

Take Your Ukulele on Vacation: 5th Annual in NH White Mountains

This Meetup is past

15 people went

World Fellowship Conference Center

Drake Hill Road · Albany, NH

How to find us

Call 603-447-2280 to reserve! Come for a day, stay for a week! If you bus, we'll meet you at the bus station!

Location image of event venue


We invite you to grab your ukulele and bring it on vacation with you to the beautiful White Mountains of New Hampshire! Relax, sing, strum and have a good time with other good people! All meals prepared! And learn a great deal strumming with others in the ongoing ukulele workshops and jams, culminating in Fun Night on Friday night when you may perform solo or in a group, or just sit back and applaud!

We thrilled that our outstanding staff will be rejoining us this year: With our co-leaders Dan and Molly are Danno Sullivan, Erin Sullivan, Kiyoshi Imai, Shana Aisenberg, and Chuck Goldstone.

Our goal is to have fun playing, relax with friends and family and throw in some learning!

It’s time to sign up for this year’s festival! July 15 is close upon us.
Come for a day or two or the entire week. Call the camp ASAP to reserve your place,[masked] or for accommodation options and fees

World Fellowship Center serves wholesome locavore meals, offers canoeing, kayaking and swimming in a pristine White Mountains pond, hiking, biking, evening programs, and just hanging out. Free Children's Fellowship for two hours every morning and every evening. Contact World Fellowship Center, for information about rates and accommodations. Tell them you are a ukulele player, and invite your family even if they are not.

Many Boston Ukulele Union members have attended past festivals.
Contact Dan or Molly, [masked], [masked], to receive a brochure with complete festival information.

1. Accommodations including all meals and equipment. (Ask WFC for options, including camping on site)
2. Festival Cost (which includes the festival song book and resource book) is $150 a week or $30 a day regardless of how many or how few activities you engage with!

Our festival song book is an eclectic collection of popular music, folk songs, spirituals, freedom and protest songs and personal favorites of ourselves and the folks we strum with regularly. We put the songs into a format to make them easy to play. HERE IS THE LINK TO DOWNLOAD THE 150 Greatest Hits of the 2017 festival, the 2018 book will be almost like it with additions, corrections and deletions, but you can get started right now!!!

On Saturday we will be joined by special guest Tj Wheeler. He is an original but his music is steeped in styles that go back hundreds of years. Tj transports audiences of all ages to times and places where their imaginations can vividly and vicariously experience the rich history and soul connections of Blues & Jazz power. Tj will offer a morning workshop and perform for the entire camp on Saturday evening. Check him out at

After breakfast the three class flow:

1. Molly & Dan: Jump Start for beginners & refreshers for anyone
2. Shana, Dan & Molly: Sing & Strum Circle using the 150 greatest hits song book, with tips & bits of instruction on topics like: strumming, changing chords efficiently, using chord families, and playing by ear.
3. Shana: Expanding Horizons with music theory, circle of fifths, chord melody, twelve bar blues, moveable chords, etc.

After lunch, choose from these amazing offerings or head off to the lake for swimming and boating.

1. Erin: Songwriting
2. Danno: Topic of the Day– playing without thinking, prep for performance, novelty songs, strumming etc. Watch the Post-Its!
3. Tue-Fri Kiyoshi: Hawaian songs & making simple instruments for jug band playing.
4. Thurs-Sat Chuck: will be leading Songs of the Roaring Twenties, and will help us learn those amazing triple strums associated with ukulele master George Formby.

EVENING PROGRAMS AFTER SUPPER: Every evening from 7:30- to 9:00, World Fellowship Center offers educational and entertaining programs on a range of themes. Here are three that connect specifically to our program.

Wednesday’s evening program will be led by Molly and Dan featuring readings and songs from Dan’s memoir, “History Lessons: A Memoir of Growing up in An American Communist Family.”

Friday night is Fun Night (an informal talent show for the entire camp).

Saturday night will be an amazing roots music concert by Tj Wheeler.

AFTER HOURS PORCH SINGS: starting Sunday night from about 9:15 to 10:45 will be our favorite part of camp, mellow, informal singing on the porch, sometimes the camp staff and folks from other programs with other instruments will join us. We’ve had saxophones, horns, drums, harmonicas, shakers, violins, basses, well just about anything. Everyone at WFC is welcome to join with voices, ukes, shakers, violins, bass, hands, paws, or anything you got now! Also an opportunity for some to lead or perform each day, check with leader!

Thursday’s porch sing will feature an open mic for ukulele players to perform individually and in small groups.
Co-Directors, DAN AND MOLLY LYNN WATT, long time educators, are active in the Boston Ukulele Union, lead the Ukulele Sing and Strum Circle now in its 8th year, meetups at NEFFA and the Folk Song Society of Greater Boston. They co-lead the Jump Start and the Sing & Strum Sessions every morning. This is the fifth year they have designed and led this ukulele festival program.

SHANA AISENBERG is a multi-instrumentalist, performs regularly for dances and concerts in New Hampshire, and teachers guitar, mandolin and ukulele. She has co-written many music books including Ukulele Complete Edition published by Alfred Music. She co-leads the Sing & Strum Circle and takes us into Expanding Horizons

DANNO SULLIVAN is one of the founders of the Boston Ukulele Union and a superb teacher in person and with online classes-
His workshops will feature a topic of the day, based some of his most popular lessons and frequently asked questions. Possible topics include:
• Playing without thinking
• Play instantly in any key (the magic of movable chords)
• The Universal Master Strum -- Never ask "What's the strum pattern?" again
• Simplifying tricky chords on the fly
• Coaching for performing at open mics.

ERIN ASH SULLIVAN is a singer, songwriter and educator.
From Journal to Song: Using Memory and Reflection to Inspire Your Songwriting.
Erin says: Everyone has at least one original song inside them! Learn how to use the process of journaling and free writing to unlock your creative ideas and shape them into a song.
I believe that a song can be one of the simplest and purest ways to get an idea or a feeling out there in the world because in your lyrics you can bring together many avenues of expression—metaphors, poetic imagery, simple and straightforward everyday speech, even a heartfelt “AAHH” here and there! Mix the elements together in the right combination and it can be magical.

Here is a song by Joni Mitchell:
Oh I am a lonely painter
I live in a box of paints
I'm frightened by the devil
And I'm drawn to those ones that ain't afraid

I remember that time that you told me, you said
"Love is touching souls"
Surely you touched mine 'cause
Part of you pours out of me

In these lines from time to time
Oh you are in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet
Oh, I could drink a case of you, darling
and I would still be on my feet
Oh I would still be on my feet
- Joni Mitchell, “A Case of You” (1971)

I’m quoting Joni Mitchell (a) because in my opinion she ranks up there as one of the best songwriters in the history of American music and (b) because I remember vividly the first time I heard this album and thinking, “How do you write a song like THAT?”

I also believe that the best place to get your own songwriting going is by journaling—a lot. Through free writes and journal entries, you can start to access memories, thoughts, beginnings of feelings. You can take one slender thread and weave it into a richer tapestry of words and phrases—and from there, turn it into a musical expression of an important feeling or memory.
Our workshop will focus on writing exercises and prompts that will get your ideas flowing. We’ll spend time getting those ideas on paper, and we’ll talk about ways you can identify the ideas that are most compelling to you. Then we’ll turn them into lyrics and talk about ways you can set them to music, whether you’re a virtuoso or a three-chord “plunker.”

What do you need for this class? A journal, a writing implement, and a willingness to share your ideas. Hope to see you there! ___________________________________________________________
KIYOSHI IMAI leads the Palm Court Serenaders, who play and sing Hawaiian songs, in the NH Seacoast area. He will bring us a collection of songs that takes us back to the very roots of the ukulele, songs that relax us, enchant us, and invite us to dance.
CHUCK GOLDSTONE plays a mean banjo uke, featuring songs of the 1920s. He will bring us his latest collection of popular songs of the period, and introduce us to the playing styles of the old masters.
At World Fellowship you can always opt out and relax into a book, play in the crystal lake, take a kayak out, climb a mountain, take your Waterman into a quiet creek. Howard Fain will lead you or guide you or send you off on hiking and biking trips, and the camp will give you a lunch to take!

Ah! The perfect vacation for those who love to make simple music together!
And a perfect place to bring your family and friends