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Tara Summer Solstice 2005

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Okanagan Pagan Pride Day 2005

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Between the Worlds: A Grand Magickal Congress

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Starwood 2004 (1)

Sirius Rising 2004

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Starwood 2004 (2)

The 2004 DC Pagan Pride Week

Salt Lake Pagan Pride 2004

Okanagan Valley Pagan Pride Review

Pagan Pride: Suncoast

Year: 2003 ...

Starwood 2003 (1)

Pagan Pride: San Francisco

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Starwood 2001 (2)

Author: Don Waterhawk [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: August 5th. 2001
Times Viewed: 12,523
Sponsored by: Starwood/ACE
Location: Brushwood Folklore Center, Western NY
Event Date(s): July 18th-23rd, 2001

Thursday was another day of many workshops, more and more people were still coming in, and people were in full swing with festival garb and fun. In the afternoon it started to rain, sometimes heavy. You could easily tell the Tornado survivors, they were the ones stopping and looking up. Kokopelli was wild eyed and a bit fiesty for most of the day, wondering if these dumb humans were going to put her through another terrifying time, but she calmed down during the night. Each night seemed teaming with rituals, ceremonies, and concerts. Always ending with the drumming down at the roundhouse, the upper field, and the middle ritual field. Three separate drum circles, but never seeming to compete with each other, just giving variety for the community. But always ending (or not) with the all night drumming down in the roundhouse. Thank you Brushwood firekeepers, for making safe space in the circle. And thanks to the people that placed a drummers alter and dancers alter in the circle. Things are coming together

Friday offered another day of workshops and entertainment. I've not listed the Musicians,Presenters and other entertainment people, simply because there are way to many within the Starwood realm. You would have to go to the Starwood site to see that. When the night came, people began to ready for the Starwood Laser Light and Fireworks show. This year there were twice as many lasers used, and the show was truly exciting, Starwood seems to always get better each year

Saturday came with the acknowledgement that this is to be the last real Starwood day... wahhhhhhh...! But also with the knowledge that this is the night for the Starwood Bonfire... and someone really ordered Spirit to "biggee size" it...and they did. Ho! the Firekeepers, for they did a great job with the pyrotechnic display and the shape of the bonfire. Many thanks to the Torchbearers Clan for initiating the Spirits within the flames, and to the Dancers for bringing forth the magik of the circle, and to the Drummers for giving the beat to feed the community. And for the Standing Ones (trees), that gave themselves to the fire. Some of the trees that were felled during the Tornado were used within this years fire. Although the energy was a bit tame around the fire this year, it was nonetheless great. And the drumming and dancing lasted until about 10am Sunday morning.

So Sunday came, and drumming faded out in the late morning, and the sounds of cars coming down into the field were heard along with the clanking of poles as tents and pavilions were being taken down. Its was way to short... it always is...but there is next year to look forward to. The closing circle ending the festival, and the field suddenly looked bare.

My view of Starwood this year... outstanding. You get more bang for your buck at this festival than any other. Starwood offers so much more in the way of entertainment and knowledge. And the Community is growing each year to make it a tighter spiritual community. I know that Starwood is not supposed to be a "Pagan" festival, but this year I think that ACE is understanding that thats what it is, and it will become more as each year follows. There were more rituals this year than previous ones, The Elders Council is in full swing and growing, and people are working harder and harder to bring this community together. And ACE had done a tremendous job of providing for the people what they want, and for allowing for the people what they need.

On Monday, I was at a meeting with Frank Barney (Owner of Brushwood) and Jeff Rosenbaum (Executive Director of ACE) to discuss the problems at this years Starwood. Problems being water shortage and porta potty fillups. Those problems were caused by the main problem... Gate crashers...! At Brushwood, its not that hard to sneak in, so each year more and more people are attempting to do this. Jeff and Frank estimated that there were over 200+ people that snuck in this year. That sucks for all of us that paid to get in. In the years before, when someone was caught, they were taken to the top of the hill and either thrown out or given a chance to pay. Well boys and girls... things are going to change, so get the word out.

From now on, there is a new policy that will be implicated. If you are found to be anywhere on the property during Sirius or Starwood, and you have not paid... you will be handed over to the New York State Police, charged with trespassing, and possibly have your belongings confiscated and your car towed. There will be no second chance and the people that are screwing these things up are going to be dealt with differently from now on. We are all tired of having to deal with these idiots coming in and making it difficult for the all. A new security system will be implemented and things are going to change a bit... and for the good of all. Goodbye freeloaders and thieves... hello community...!

Another problem that was evident at Starwood this year are the "Tourists", these are the people that had video camera's and other camera's that had no respect for people that they were taking pictures of. Be respectful. Many were not and words flew. The picture taking in general will stop. Cameras will once again be registered with Brushwood and Starwood, or the camera and film will be confiscated. A lot of these picture thieves were gate crashers, so next year, Starwood will be different with the handling of these disrespectful tourists.

So to end we had a wonderful time at Starwood. Will we be back? well, its a long journey for us from South Florida... but its worth it! The people are worth it, the fun times are worth it, the drumming and dancing is worth it, and yes... in the words of the great St. Arnie... "I'uall be bauck".

Dream Gently

Don Two Eagles WaterHawk

WitchVox Note: No "freeloaders or thieves" are pictured or celebrated in this coverage of Starwood 2001.
Photo Credits: The Beautiful photos in this coverage were captured digitally by Don Waterhawk of Waterhawk Creations Arial and Balloon shots by Daniella

From Top to Bottom (left to right)
  1. Sherri, Pearl, Michael and Penny
  2. Hank and Penny
  3. Jake, Maple and Ingrid
  4. Ingrid
  5. Halim'El and Billy Woods

For the Latest on ACE: Visit the A.C.E. Website on the world wide web.

Article Specs

Article ID: 3571

VoxAcct: 13651

Section: festivals

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 6,678

Times Read: 12,523


Don Waterhawk

Location: Fort Myers, Florida


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