The American Folklore Society's 131st annual meeting was held October 16–19, 2019 at the Hyatt Regency Inner Harbor of Baltimore, Maryland. The theme for the meeting was "Community Driven. "It was the meeting that almost wasn't as an impending labor strike nearly forced AFS to move locations at the 11th hour. However, AFS, on the behalf of its members, supported the Hyatt Regency employees and a favorable settlement between the workers union and the hotel was attained the day before the conference was set to begin.
Our alumni, faculty, and current students gave dozens of papers, sat on roundtables, headed up section meetings, and gathered for our annual alumni reception on Friday evening. Many of our faculty and alumni received honors and awards: Drs. Ray Cashman and Jason Jackson were inducted to the American Folklore Society Fellows; Dr. Moira Marsh, our Folklore subject librarian, received the Judith McCulloh Award for Lifetime Service to the Field; Dr. John Holmes McDowell, Professor of Folklore, received the Children's Folklore Lifetime Achievement Medal; and Dr. Alison Martin, ('20 Ph.D.) received the Zora Neale Hurston prize.
While the 2020 AFS annual meeting will look different due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are still looking forward to coming together in some form to celebrate and promote Folklore scholarship, advocacy, and activism this fall.