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| VoxPath: Home / festivals / Summerstar 2002|| Posted: 8/4/2002
July 19-21, 2002
(along the Columbia River Gorge - Oregon, USA)
Review by N`osal Woodbender
For the three of us the adventure started as a journey last December. This is when we met Sheila, and when I learned of a blacksmith down in Oregon who did athame blades. It was from Dan, this blacksmith that I learned of the festival held in the Columbia River gorge. The name of this festival is Summerstar. [http://summerstar.org]
It is a three-hour drive from the Seattle area to Summerstar. We knew we had made the right turn when we began to see the pentagram signs along side the road. We rounded a bend and saw in the woods a tent city that must be Summerstar. The staff at registration took pity on three newbies and led us to an area where we could set up our booth. They also pointed us in the direction we might find Dan's Teepee. It was there that we found Dan. It was wonderful finally meeting a friend I had worked with for months. We settled it very quickly that we would be camping by his site. So it was that I found myself setting up the tarp over our booth, while Joleen and Sheila set up camp between two teepees.
The meadow as Summerstar started.
It was shortly after getting everything set up, and getting a chance for a break that the drums began in the main ritual area. We grabbed our drums and headed over to the meadow. What happened next was a drumming, happy, dance to the Four Corners of the Summerstar area. At each cardinal point someone was pointed out at random to invoke the element for that direction. This was both moving and uplifting. There were as many ways as there were directions in this invocation. So went the opening ritual at Summerstar, and our introduction to Summerstar ritual.
We ate and met with new friends for most of the evening. We attended our first function of the festival latter. A presentation of the Gnostic Mass at close to midnight presented by The Coph Nia Lodge, O.T.O [http://www.efn.org/~cophnia]. It was my first time experiencing this. It was very beautiful and moving presentation. I would recommend to anyone who has a chance to experience this to do so, no matter what your magickal path.
Morning came quicker then it should have. Joleen woke me up for coffee, and to set up our booth. She helped our friend Shiela conduct a class in drum making. I was left to fend for myself at our booth. Talking with people as they came up to check out my carvings. Enjoying people watching as the world unfolded around me. Shiela [http://shamanweaver.com/ ] conducted a class in drum making as well as a class in shamanic spirit journeying that day. So while I relaxed in our booth, she and Joleen worked. The drum making class was very popular, and speaking from experience, the drums are wonderful. I tuned mine up while they were instructing others on the construction. Getting ready for the night's ritual and drumming.
The main ritual that evening was a healing ritual. Everyone was encouraged to carve their intent for a personal healing on a piece of wood to throw on one of two fires in the circle center. Entering the circle was very powerful. Entering through a corridor of drummers, being drummed into the circle. In the circle we split into two circles, I entered the center circle, the one intended for drummers. The outer circle was for dancers. We drummed as the dancers danced, our circles slowly revolving around each other. When they stopped revolving, I ended up not more than a few feet from my friend Dan. He was in the circle to tend the fires that night. This made the ritual all that more special to me. That we could share something so special in such a random fashion was very magickal. As the ritual was finished and the circle broken, I joined the other drummers in drumming the other participants out. It was a wonderful ritual.
The next morning over a cup of some wonderful coffee at the Laughing Bird I got a chance to talk with Sienna, the owner. Chance would have it that we ended up camping right across from the one place to get coffee. I had met Sienna many years ago when I was commuting down to Vancouver to help my dad go through chemotherapy for lung cancer. Her store was a place of calm for me to visit on these stressful journeys. I had lost contact with her and was saddened by what I read in Wren's nest about the Christian group that had bought the building out to get her store out of the area. It was very good to see her, and see her doing well. Her case is being heard currently by the state discrimination board. I wish her the best. It is wonderful to be back in contact with her, and we had a wonderful morning of coffee and gab.
We took most of the day breaking camp and the booth. The temperature was in the 90's. We would do a few loads, then take a shade break. We were around for closing circle, and this parting shot of the meadow. More shots of the event were not possible, out of consideration of those whom I could not ask. These two pictures are like portals in my mind. They show the event at starting and finishing. And in between, much magick happened.
The meadow at Summerstar after the closing ritual.
As we were getting ready to leave, Heidi, Dan's partner arrived back. So I did manage to get a picture of the five of us together. Most of our talk was spent in planning next year though out the day. We are already looking forward to next year.
The Witches' Voice
August 4th., 2002
Summerstar Webiste: summerstar.org
White Heart Forge: www.spiritone.com/~dklug/
Who Are these People? Pictured in the anchor photo are (from left to right) Shiela, Dan, Heidi, Joleen, and Greg
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