Winter Concerts

White Gull Inn folk concerts feature contemporary and traditional folk artists from all over the country, who perform in an intimate and acoustic setting in the White Gull dining room. The concerts are held approximately once a month in winter, usually on Wednesday nights. Each 8 PM concert is preceded by an optional 6 PM dinner, featuring a special selection by the chef, which varies each month.

Robbie Fulks Featured in First Concert of 33rd Season of Folk Music at the White Gull

 White Gull Inn folk concerts, now entering their 33rd season, feature contemporary and traditional folk artists from all over the country, who perform in an intimate and acoustic setting in the White Gull dining room.  The concerts are held approximately once a month in winter, usually on Wednesday nights.  Each 8 PM concert is preceded by an optional 6 PM dinner, featuring a special selection by the chef, which varies each month.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016 - Robbie Fulks Tickets:  $20

The Chicago Tribune calls Robbie Fulks“…a masterly, …multifaceted songwriter…who can belt out hip-shaking, honky tonk, honeydew pop and chilling little ballads…with an unrivaled skill and spirt.  So good, he’s scary.”   Fulks is prodigiously talented, with the soul of a country singer and the mind of a vaudevillian.  Widely regarded as one of the most gifted songwriters to ever ply the trade, he can sing the kids ditty “Eggs” and Merle Haggard’s “Sing a Sad Song” back to back and mean them both.  Lost in the deserved accolades for being a fabulously unique, clever and heartfelt writer is the fact that he’s also one of the best guitarists around, who can whip it out in honky-tonk, country, bluegrass, power pop or whatever strikes his whimsy at the time.  Born in York, Pennsylvania, Robbie grew up in a half-dozen towns in southeast Pennsylvania, the North Carolina Piedmont and the Blue Ridge area of Virginia.  He attended Columbia College in New York City before dropping out to focus on the Greenwich Village songwriter scene.                                                                                                In the mid-1980’s Fulks moved to Chicago and joined Greg Cahill’s Special Consensus Bluegrass Band, with whom he made one record in 1989.  Since then he has gone on to create a multifarious career in music.  He has been a staff instructor in guitar and ensemble at Old Town School of Folk Music,  worked on Nashville’s MusicRow as a staff songwriter, and has made multiple appearances on WSM’s “Grand Ole Opry”,  NPR’s “Fresh Air”, PBS’s” Austin City Limits”, NBC’s “Today”, “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” and “30 Rock.”       

Optional Pre-concert fixed price dinner served at 6 PM:  $21.95 Menu:  Pork and Tomatillo Stew served with tortilla chips, salad of chopped mixed greens, apples, jicama, avocado and honey-lime dressing.  Pumpkin Flan for dessert.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 – String Ties Tickets:  $20

String Ties calls the hills of the upper Mississippi home, blending Bluegrass, Old-time Country, Swing, Gospel, and Folk into an engaging version of acoustic music~~evoking nostalgia, love lost and found, moonshine hills, and sturdy shoes on a barn dance floor.  This bluegrass band, together since 1988, consists of Larry Dalton on string bass, Wayne Beezley on Mandolin, Tommy Pfaff on the 5-string banjo and Dan Sebranek on guitar.  (White Gull audiences will remember Dan, who has performed in our concert series with Singer-Songwriter Johnsmith.)  In addition to playing straight ahead traditional and contemporary bluegrass, String Ties is bringing its own special Holiday show to the inn.


Optional Pre-concert fixed price dinner served at 6 PM:  $21.95

Menu: Beef Bourguignonne served over mashed Yukon golds with French bread, salad of spinach, Pear, Pomegranate and Citrus Vinaigrette.  Cranberry Walnut Pie for dessert.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017 – The Molly Tuttle Band   Tickets: $20                    

A virtuoso multi-instrumentalist and award winning songwriter with a distinctive voice, Molly has turned the heads of even the most seasoned industry professionals. She began performing on stage when she was 11, and recorded her first album, The Old Apple Tree, at age 13. Since then, she’s appeared on A Prairie Home Companion and at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, was featured on the cover of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine, won first place in the prestigious Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at Merlefest, and, last May, graduated from the Berklee College of Music, which she attended on a Hazel Dickens Memorial Scholarship. Her lovely voice, impeccable guitar playing, and sensitive song writing make her a star on the rise. She has already received more than two million YouTube views and has recently released two EP's with The Goodbye Girls and as a duo with John Mailander. She now makes her home in Nashville and spends time touring, writing and recording. 

Molly is currently touring with the Molly Tuttle Band, a four-piece bluegrass band.


 Optional Pre-concert fixed price dinner served at 6 PM:  $21.95

 Menu:  Chicken Fricassee, French bread, salad of mixed greens, roasted butternut squash, toasted pecans, and Gorgonzola and sherry vinaigrette.  Orange Crunch cake for dessert.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017 – Don Stiernberg TrioTickets $20

     While still in his teens, Don Stiernberg learned to play the mandolin from the innovative and influential virtuoso Jethro Burns.  Jethro referred to Don as his “graduate student”, hired him to play in his band, and guided him to a career as a professional musician which has lasted for decades.  A leading exponent of jazz mandolin style, Don has nine recording projects of his own and appears on many others by a variety of artists in all styles.  The most recent of these is “Good Numbers”, a jazz CD featuring the Don Stiernberg Trio, which consists of Don and two other renowned Chicago jazz musicians.  Guitarist Andy Brown is known for his brilliance with all facets of guitar playing – accompaniment, blazing solo lines and his own unique chordal style.  Jim Cox is everyone’s favorite bass player, with performance and recording credentials ranging from Earl Hines to Judy Roberts to Marian McPartland to Rosemary Clooney and countless others.  The trio has performed from Portland east to Portland west as well as overseas visits to festivals in Germany and Brazil.  Their style might be described as swinging interpretations of accessible jazz material played acoustically on mandolin (and occasional vocal), guitar and bass.  Or, in short, Good Pickin’ on the Good Numbers. 

Optional Pre-concert fixed price dinner served at 6 PM:  $21.95

Menu:  Louisiana Gumbo served over rice, green chili cornbread, salad of mixed greens, fennel, orange and citrus vinaigrette.  Flourless chocolate cake for dessert.  

 (No March concert)

Wednesday, April 5, 2017, Scott Cook Tickets:  $19  A roots balladeer with a rare personal warmth, Canada’s Scott Cook has managed to distil the stories collected over a decade of near-incessant touring across Canada, the USA, Europe, Asia and Australia into straight-talking, keenly observant verse. Road-worn, painfully honest and deeply human, his tunes weave threads of folk, roots, blues, soul and country over spacious fingerstyle guitar and clawhammer banjo arrangements.  His fourth release, “One More Time Around,” was nominated for a Canadian Folk Music Award, and its opening track“Pass it Along” won the folk and Acoustic category in the 2013 UK Songwriting Contest, with UK magazine “Maverick Country” naming him “one of Canada’s most inspiring and imaginative storytellers.”  Cook is currently touring around the world in support of his fifth album, “Scott Cook and the Long Weekends Go Long.”                

Optional Pre-concert fixed price dinner served at 6 PM:  $21.95


Menu:  Ragu alla Bolognese served over pasta, Focaccia and salad of mixed greens, pepperoncini, black olives, grape tomatoes, parmesan cheese.  $21.95

 Tickets, dinner reservations and information at the White Gull Inn920-868-3517 www.whitegullinn.

The White Gull Concert Series Turns 33

In 1983, on a cold November evening, a small group of Door County visitors and residents gathered at a local inn, enjoying the first of what has become a popular tradition: monthly winter folk concerts. During this time, more than 100 talented folk singers and songwriters from all over the country have performed at the White Gull Inn.

The concerts were conceived by the Innkeeper Andy Coulson, a banjo player himself and lover of traditional and contemporary folk music. Coulson was frustrated by the lack of live entertainment during the long quiet Door County winters. The first concerts were loosely based on the "house concert" concept, in which traveling folk musicians, often on tight budgets and in need of work, are invited into the homes of fans along the route of their travels. The fans provide the musician with food and lodging in return for a concert to a small group of friends, often right in their living rooms. A collection at the door goes to the artist to help defray expenses.

The house concert circuit has provided work and travel expenses for generations of singers and brought folk music to many rural areas that are too small to otherwise provide such entertainment. "I wasn't sure who would come to a concert on a weekday in winter in Fish Creek," Coulson recalls thinking in the beginning. "But we had plenty of room and board , and figured that we had nothing to lose. At the very least, we'd have some quality folk music in Fish Creek."

In the beginning, it was not easy finding artists willing to come so far for such a small turnout. However, as word got around, more and more musicians decided that a "working holiday" in the quiet beauty of the Door Peninsula was worth the trek to the north country. The series has gradually been able to attract in more and more well known performers, such as Anne Hills, Chris Smither, Tom Paxton and Cheryl Wheeler, many of whom normally play in much larger halls.

The pre-concert dinners, now almost as popular as the concerts, were added in recent years at the request of local residents. White Gull chefs responded by offering an optional fixed price dinner, served at 6 pm for each concert.

Concert tickets are $16.00-$20.00 and can be purchased at the door, although most concerts are sold out, so advance ticket purchase and reservations for the pre-concert dinners are recommended. You may purchase tickets at the White Gull front desk, or you can do it by phone, using a credit card.

Folk Musicians Previously Featured at the White Gull
Date: 1983-2016

Musicians who have appeared in the White Gull folk concert series in the 32 seasons since its inception in 1983: Tom Paxton, Cheryl Wheeler, John McCuen, Bob Gibson, John McCutcheon, Chris Smither, Michael Smith, Bill Miller, Fred Alley, Vance Gilbert, Neal & Leandra, Lou and Peter Berryman, Michael Johnson, Garnet Rogers, Pat Donohue, Laurie Lewis and Tom Rozum, Joel Mabus, David Mallett, Suzzy and Maggie Roche, Cindy Mangsen and Steve Gillette, Bill Staines, Buddy Mondlock, Bryan Bowers, Peter Keane, Mark Dvorak, Anne Hills, Willy Porter, Michael Miles, Bob Bovee and Gail Heil, Jim Hurst and Missy Raines, Dave Moore, Cathie Ryan, Small Potatoes, Matt Watroba, Peter Mayer, Kenny White, Natalia Zukerman, Eric Lewis, Tommy Burroughs, Andy Ratliff, Hans Christian, David Roth, Brooks Williams, Steppin In It with Rachel Davis, James Keelaghan, Chuck Pyle, L. J. Booth, Johnsmith, Clay Riness, Tom Pease, Louise Taylor, Christopher Shaw and Bridget Ball, Mark Dvorak, Priscilla Herdman, Claudia Schmidt, Moe Dixon, Susan Smentek, Heartwood, Cosy Sheridan, Becky Schlegel, Don Stiernberg, Victoria Vox, Wil Maring and Robert Bowlin, Michael Johnathon, May Erlewine and Seth Bernard, Peter Mulvey, Jonathan Byrd, Jerry Rau, The Special Consensus, Phil Passen and Highland Road, Antje Duvekot, the Waymores, the Honey Dewdrops, David Wilcox, The Steel Wheels, Lindsay Lou & the Flatbellys, Paul Cebar, Dayna Kurtz, Kelly Joe Phelps, Count This Penny, Carolyn Martin, the Stray Birds, Molly O'Brien and Rich Moore, Nora Jane Struthers and the Party Line, Rita Hosking, Red Molly, Jake Armerding, Tim Grimm, Mipso, 10 String Symphony. 

The concerts are held approximately once a month, November through April, beginning at 8 pm, after an optional dinner served at 6 pm.