Appalachian Summer Solstice 2019 Workshops

The 12-Steps Without the God Part – Rev. Donna Donovan. Tue Jun 18th 10am @ Hickory Grove

It’s a comment heard often in helping those with addictions: “I tried AA or NA, but I just couldn’t get past the God part.” The God part, of course, refers to the references to God and spirituality that appear in Alcoholics Anonymous literature – the 12 Steps and 12 Traditions in particular – as well as to the more overt signs of religion that can be part of some AA meetings, such as the reciting of the Lord’s Prayer. For the Heathen or Pagan, as well as with the agnostic, atheist, and humanist, it can feel like a distraction from the work at hand as well as a disturbing admonishment to check their beliefs at the door. For others, however, tapping into God’s power is the very thing that makes recovery possible. How, then, to ignore it? The conflicting mindsets have created tension over the years, a tension that AA/NA has sought to address by encouraging a personal definition of God as any higher power the person may choose. It could be, for example, nature, love or the AA/NA group as a whole (in the latter case, as the explanation goes, G.O.D. becomes Group Of Drunks). As part of her co-authoring the recently released book, “Steel Bars, Sacred Waters”, Donna Donovan wrote a Celtic pagan version of the 12 Steps. This workshop focuses on the different versions of the 12 Steps that those who do not follow an Abrahamic path can utilize in their recovery. Despite any differences in beliefs, those in AA/NA are kindred spirits at heart, all struggling to subdue addiction’s hold on their lives. And for that, support is essential. Rather than dispute which path is best, we’re wise to remember the words of AA co-founder Wilson: “The roads to recovery are many.” Just like in Vegas, the same as in the rooms: what is said and shared at this workshop stays in this workshop.

Agroforestry for Land Management – Badger Baldwin Johnson. Wed Jun 19th 10am @ Green Man

Agroforestry is an intensive land management system that optimizes the benefits from the biological interactions created when trees and/or shrubs are deliberately combined with crops and/or livestock. There are five basic types of agroforestry practices today in North America: windbreaks, alley cropping, silvopasture, riparian buffers and forest farming. Within each agroforestry practice, there is a continuum of options available to landowners depending o­n their own goals (e.g., whether to maximize the production of interplanted crops, animal forage, or trees). The facilitator will solicit land management concerns and questions, and then explore these practices in conversation to think about how members of the group might employ them. This workshop is open to all ages

The Conscious Dream – Noah Mask. Wed Jun 19th 4pm @ Hickory Grove

An introduction to intentional dreaming as a spiritual practice, covering basic and advanced techniques for dreamers of all skill levels. Research has suggested dreamers who are aware within their dreams have a higher aptitude for attentional focus, resilience, and self awareness in their waking lives. Though the ability to dream consciously comes natural to some, it can also be cultivated and grown within anyone. This workshop will be an informational group discussion, with emphasis on dreaming with awareness, sharing dream experiences, establishing and enhancing personal dream practices, and participating in some collective dream analysis. Topics will include standard lucidity, active dreaming, conscious dreaming, waking practices, dream journaling, and more. Dreams have been an integral part of daily life since the dawn of mankind. Let us honor them by learning and sharing together. Join us for an uplifting and informative discussion. All dream practices, questions, and contributions welcome. Please bring chairs or something comfortable to sit on.

Creating the Dream- Honoring Dreams through Creative Expression – Noah Mask. Thu Jun 20th 4pm @ Hickory Grove

Dreams provide a rich source of inner wisdom. The language of our subconscious can speak to us with calls toward action, reflection, or clarity in our lives. When we work with our dreams and learn to express them, we are honoring our dreams in waking life and acting to understand their insights. Join us as we honor our dreams in a creative capacity.
This workshop is for those who desire a space for uplifting, transformative, meditative dreamwork. Together we will facilitate a safe and vibrant space where our creativity can flourish. You will then be asked to connect with a dream you consider strong in your mind and express it using the materials provided. This is open to your interpretation, there is no wrong way to express! Many mediums will be provided to help you color, draw, paint, write, or sculpt your dream representation of choice. You are invited to use whatever words, shapes, hues, and textures feel right to you. The goal is not in the outcome of your art, but in the exchange involved in creating it. There will be a plethora of art supplies and paper provided to use, but you are also welcome to bring your own.With that in mind, it is recommended to bring both a chair or blanket to sit on and something flat (like a notebook or clipboard) as a portable drawing surface.

Critical Thinking in the Magical World – Jared Thomas. Sat Jun 22nd 10am @ Hickory Grove

Critical Thinking in a Magical World is an open forum designed to explore the mechanisms in which individuals construct realities in the parapsychological world from a social psychological perspective. We will discuss the limitations of science and implications of subjective perceptions/interpretations of reality. The information collected in this workshop will be part of an ongoing research project

Ethical Non-Monogamy for the Rest of Us – Badger Baldwin Johnson. Wed Jun 19th Noon @ Green Man (18+)

In recent years and as people in our society continue to negotiate the social contract, there has been renewed public discussion and participation in polyamory and related relationship forms. Negotiating on a case-by-case basis the terms of intimate, committed relationships is becoming the new norm for many people. This class will workshop some of the possible benefits and challenges of the changing terrain, using respectful and discrete small-group discussion. If you are a poly veteran and in good standing with the community and come to the workshop, I may recruit you to help facilitate small group discussions. This Workshop is for Adults 18 and older.

Fae-Touched Magick: Working with the Faery Realms to Empower Magick – Gwelt Awenydd. Tue Jun 18th 2pm @ Hickory Grove

This workshop is an introduction to working with the Good Neighbors (faeries) with an eye toward partnership in magick and general good relations with our neighbor beyond the veil.

Family Faery Ball – Beth Zimmerman. Thu Jun 20th 4pm @ Faery Shrine

It’s time for the wee ones to have a turn dancing with the faeries! We will bring along toys, music and more as we invite all the younger attendees to come and play! Adults will be in costume – and in character – to entertain and intrigue the little ones. Snacks and drinks will be provided as we play games, dance, and sing, leaving offerings of joy and friendship for the faeries

Five Animal Frolics Qigong – Becky Laskody. Thu Jun 20th 10am @ Main Stage

This workshop will lead participants through the beginning movements of the basic animal frolics qigong. Legend states that the famous Chinese physician Hua Tuo developed these exercises and patterned them off of the movements of the Crane, Bear, Deer, Monkey, and Tiger to harmoniously balance the energies (qi or chi) of fire, water, wood, earth, and metal within the body.

A Gift for a Gift, a modern Blót – Josh Hermansen-Parker. Thu Jun 20th 2pm @ Ancestor Mound

Our ancestors had the practice of making sacrifices for good harvests, large families, fair weather, etc. Gifts to their deities. Though our needs have changed, we still can today! Join Josh and Michelle (21+ please) for a participation class of a modern day blót, a Norse based rite of sacrifice. We will have some mead to share and offer up. If needed, please bring anything you would prefer to drink and offer.

Granny Magick/Conjure 1 – Michelle “RJ” Horan. Wed Jun 19th Noon @ Pavilion

An overview of traditional healing ways and folkways/magickal practices, past history to present throughout rural Appalachia. Practical uses for herbal remedies, how to properly forage, clean, dry and preserve herbs and other such natural remedies. How these can be used for both practical and magickal conjure preparations?

Granny Magick/Conjure 2 – Michelle “RJ” Horan. Fri Jun 21st Noon @ Pavilion

Part two of the Granny Magick series…. a hands-on experience! We’ll learn together what sorts of charmworks and talismans are traditional to Appalachia and why their making is relevant for magickal practitioners today. Also, we’ll discuss ideas and explore why a curio object might also have a beneficial magickal purpose. Afterwards, we will create and enchant objects of our own such as dream pillows, corn dollies, wrapped stones, wands, bottle spells…or whatever charm you choose to work’s all up to you!

Healing dolls – Jen Capone. Fri Jun 21st 10am @ Village Green ($8 workshop fee)

The magical poppet or spirit doll is one of the most commonly used tools in sympathetic magic. The idea behind sympathetic magic is, at its core, that a person can be affected magically by actions and energies towards something that represents them. Like energy becomes like energy. Poppets, spirit, and healing dolls have been around for ages, used in many different cultures and religious belief systems. There are many ways to create a sport it or healing doll. We will explore the different ways to create them and how we use them. Dolls can be used to heal emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. They can help you open your inner voice, they area physical image of thoughts and feelings. Dolls become a vessel for spirit to manifest healing. They lift your spirits, boost self-awareness, and self-confidence. They are a physical eyespot for your life, your path, and spiritual wellbeing. Made with love, kindness and compassionate intention, they will help you through an aspect of yourself and your life. I do not believe in making dolls or poppets for harm or using negative energies creating or using them as I will not support that kind of energy. We will be making our own doll for our greater selves and healing. Seeing experience is a plus, but not necessarily needed. You will be supported in your doll making and the doll is a simple wrap doll. If you can tie your shoes, you can make a doll. Fabric, fibers, herbs, beads, shells, stones and charms will be available for you to choose from. Remember what goes inside the folladds tithe magical energy of the doll. Special cost for Wisteria workshop is $8.00.

Introduction to Blacksmithing – Blacksmith O’Kelley. Thu/Fri/Sat Jun 20th-22nd 10am – Noon @ Infinity Forge
Journey to the Appalachian Mountain Spirits (part 2 of 2) – Regina Rivers . Fri Jun 21st Noon @ Hickory Grove (18+)

During the second workshop, we will discuss some of the practices of Appalachian magic and folklore to acquaint ourselves with those who work with the Spirits and their ways. The Journey: We will ask the Land Spirits for permission to journey to the Mountains for the purpose of gaining wisdom from the land itself. We will ask the spirits to share their stories with us from time immemorial, beyond memory. Afterwards, as we share our experiences in circle, we will become the oral storytellers of what the spirits wish us to know of their history and any other information they wish to share with us. Participants will need to bring: a chair, something comfortable to lie on and an eye covering as well as a journal and pen.

Pit-Fired Ceramics 1 – Sasha Sigetic. Wed Jun 19th 4pm @ Village Green

Learn to hand build a sculpture or piece of pottery using various mix-ins and techniques. The pieces will air dry until part 2 of the workshop in which they will be fired. All materials will be provided. This workshop is open to all ages

Pit-Fired Ceramics 2 – Sasha Sigetic. Fri Jun 21st 10am @ Village Green

In part 2 of the Pit-Fired Ceramics, participants will learn techniques to build a pit-kiln fire, maintaining temperatures and place the pieces made in part 1. This activity is open to all ages.

Preparation for Journey to the Appalachian Mountain Spirits (part 1 of 2) – Regina Rivers . Thu Jun 20th Noon @ Hickory Grove (18+)

Are you curious about the folklore history of the Appalachian Mountains and the magic that occurs there? Do you feel the deep vibration of the Appalachians in your bones? Are you called to know more about what causes this very real vibration? Regina’s workshops will lead you on a magical journey to the Land Spirits of these ancient mountains to discover, firsthand, some of their stories.
In preparation for PART 2, first timers will learn the process of shamanic journeying including why and how it is done. We also invite those who desire a refresher course in journeying or who want to participate as a way to reconnect with their Spirit Allies before our deeper work with the Spirits of the Land.
The Journey: We will travel to the Lower World where we will become acquainted with the realm and, while there, we will ask to connect with the vibrational frequencies that call us to the Appalachian Mountains.
Participants will need to bring: a chair, something comfortable to lie on and an eye covering as well as a journal and pen. Adults 18 and over only.

Preservation of Natural Materials – Michelle “RJ” Horan. Thu Jun 20th 4pm @ Infinity Forge

In this fireside workshop we will discuss mindfulness, honor and care concerning the harvesting, collecting and proper preservation of natural materials. Instructions, methods and recipes for how to dry and store herbs, wood, bones, do hair on or rawhide hides, hooves, horns…how to render fat, preserve sinew and more! An open sharing of heritage skills and practical experience in Wild Craft.

Tai Chi Chuan 101 – Jared Thomas. Fri Jun 21st 4pm @ Main Stage

Tai Chi Chaun is a Chinese Martial Art and Philosophical framework that instills a holistic understanding of equilibrium in all dimensions of wellbeing. Practicing Tai Chi regularly is proven to maintain strength, flexibility and balance. Some describe Tai Chi, as a Martial Art, Meditation, and Yoga all combined into one. This class is designed as an introduction to Tai Chi and no experience necessary.

To tend a Sacred Site: A working relationship with the Living Land – Lynx. Thu Jun 20th 4pm @ Stone Circle

Join Lynx as we have a roundtable discussion about maintaining an active relationship with the Living Earth and establishing and connecting with sacred sanctuary within those spaces whether here at Wisteria or abroad. After our discussion, for those who wish, we will wander up to the Labyrinth to do a group walkthrough and continue the discussion.

Working with Nonphysical Beings, for Worse and Better – Beth Zimmerman. Wed Jun 19th 4pm @ Stone Circle

If you have ever wondered what hid your wallet from4 you or what just went bump in the night, this is the class for you. We discuss the many varieties of interactions that non-physical beings can have with the living. Whether non-planar beings, nature spirits, ghosts, guardians, or even local memories, Beth has learned to connect and communicate with a range of local beings. She wants to help you tune yourself to learn about them, guard against the unwelcome, and find peace with these amazing and fun aspects of our world. This will be hands-on, focused time, learning from our environment. Please ensure all attendees can use the time well – children are welcome to come, if they want to learn for themselve