Governor Northam Joins Virginians to Celebrate Apprenticeship

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The program is in its 15th year. The program is in its 15th year.

Governor Ralph Northam (D-VA.) joined dozens of people at James Monroe Highland on Sunday to celebrate apprenticeship in the commonwealth. 

The celebration is part of the Virginia Humanities Program which focuses on apprenticeship and showcasing new and old traditions in Virginia.

“Over the year, they pair a master and apprentice in a traditional craft or art tradition that's in our great Commonwealth,” said Matthew Gibson, executive director of Virginia Humanities. “We've got everything from baklava making to decoy carving, to log cabin building, to empanada making.”

Sunday marked the 15th year the annual showcase has been held. Every part of Virginia was represented from moonshine making in southwest Virginia to decoy carving on the Eastern Shore. 

“This to me is what Virginia really is, it's so many different types of communities, so many different types of cultures and what you see here today are the different art forms, the different ways of life, the different skills that folks have,” said John Lohman, the director of Virginia’s Folklife Program. 

Organizers say that many of the traditions are centuries old and that the showcase is geared towards carrying on traditions that are in danger of becoming lost. 

“These are crafts that not only are wonderful crafts, but they also bring in revenue to the state,” said Northam.
Organizers say they are thankful that the governor came to recognize the people highlighted in the showcase.