World's Largest Cauldron comes to Salem Mass
Article ID: 2178
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 6,629
Times Read: 20,497
Posted: August 6th. 1998
Times Viewed: 20,497
WALT DISNEY Company Press Release:
The Spectacular Unveiling Of "The World's Largest Cauldron" Draws Thousands to the Bewitching Town of Salem, Mass., to Celebrate the First-Ever Home Video Release of Disney's "The Black Cauldron"; Highly Anticipated Disney Classic Available On Video Aug. 4
WitchVox Comment: The "Black Cauldron Boogie... Magick with a Disco Twist" Oh Really? <grin> This promotion is quite curious and I must admitt that I have been chuckling at the sheer absurdity of this event for a couple of days now. When we heard about this we fired off a phone call to our Salem friends and it was the first that they had heard of it. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to educate related to the reality of Witchcraft. How WILL the Salem Witch Community react? Will they be involved? Will they actually dance the "Black Cauldron Boogie"?
- What: In a Guinness World Record-setting attempt, Walt Disney Home Video will unveil the world's largest cauldron in the bewitching city of Salem, Mass., to celebrate the first-ever home video release of "The Black Cauldron." Weighing more than 250 pounds, with a diameter of seven feet, the colossal cauldron will rise out of the ground and loom 13 feet above thousands of mystified onlookers. The awe-inspiring grand finale will light up the sky as magnificent flames and glittering mines shoot out of the cauldron 50 feet into the air. During the exciting festivities, the throng of spectators will join together and perform the "Black Cauldron Boogie, " an all-new toe-tapping, hip-shaking line dance created especially for this event.
- When: Monday, Aug. 3rd , 6 p.m.-9 p.m. (Cauldron Unveiling at 9 p.m.)
- Where: Salem Common, Salem, Mass.
Look for WitchVox coverage this tuesday from our "on the sceene" Salem Witches - Michael and Therese Pendragon (see them on the WitchVox cover this week) If you get a chance to attend this "happening", quickly email us with your thoughts (news groups on the 'Net are already a buzz)
"Battling with the Evil Horned God"? "Magick with a Disco Twist"? Goddess help us all! - Fritz Jung
WitchVox Coverage - The Day After
Tuesday, August 4, 1998 :
If there was any "boogeying" going on in Salem, Mass. over the unveiling of the "world's largest cauldron", it was not being done by either the Salem Witches or their detractors.
That is a good thing, according to Salem resident Jerrie Hildebrand.
During the town's October "Haunted Happenings" celebration, there is usually a religious group or two who come to town and preach about the goings on in Salem.
But the Salem police department is very protective towards it's Pagan citizens. "Salem does not put up with this kind of harassment, " Jerrie said firmly.
That attitude is largely due to the efforts of the many Salem Pagans like Jerrie who have spent years developing educational materials and seeking open dialogue with town officials.
The three-hour party-on-the-common staged Monday night was a promotional event to mark today's worldwide release of Disney's animated film "The Black Cauldron" on home video.
A crowd, estimated at 3, 000-5, 000, of mostly parents with children enjoyed a day of hot dogs and balloons, "Black Cauldron Boogie" dance lessons and free Disney giveaways.
The grand finale-the rising from a small stone mountain of the giant black cauldron itself-drew mixed reviews.
"Little kids found it exciting when the mound starting spitting and sputtering sparks and smoke. Older kids thought it was disappointing because the articles for weeks have said there would be fireworks", remarked Jerrie.
The Salem Common event was filmed by Buena Vista Home Entertainment for promotional use.
"The Black Cauldron, " which was first released in 1985, is an 80-minute animated adventure based on Lloyd Alexander's children's fantasy novels, "The Chronicles of Prydain."
In the video, Taran, a teen-age boy sets out to find a mystical black cauldron before it falls into the hands of the sinister Horned King.
Witches have a long love-hate relationship with Disney. The negative portrayals of Witches in Disney films and cartoons have inspired many letter writing campaigns and perhaps even an occasional boycott.
On the other hand, Disney Studios has kept a certain magical element alive for children of all ages with its stories of wizards and dancing brooms and fairie folk.
So, while the Witches and Pagans of Salem have reserved their comments for the time being, that is not to say that they are necessarily pleased with Disney's presentation. They just have learned over the years to choose their battles carefully.
As Jerrie said, "This is where the power of the pen is more in order."
And that approach has made Salem, Mass a very safe city for Witches today.
The Witches' Voice
Note: Jerrie is the Vice President of Communications for the Covenant of UU Pagans, Inc. and chapter coordinator for the North Shore CUUPS chapter that meets at the First Universalist Society of Salem, MA. She is also an active member of the EarthSpirit Community.
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