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Beltania 2010: Day 3 & 4 (Florence, Colorado)

The Handfasting Saturday @ Beltania 2010

Beltania 2010: Days 3-4
* Florence Mountain Park * Florence, Colorado * www.beltanefestival.com *
A beautiful sequel to my May Day festivities in Colorado as fond memories of last year’s festival whirl around my mind …. and the third year for the festival. Beltania is a family-friendly May Day Celebration and Music Festival held in Colorado each year. Its a time when the Earth Spiritualists, Neo-Pagans, and those of alternative religious paths like the New Age, Metaphysics, and other Earth-Based Spiritual Paths come together to celebrate the seasons, celebrate love, family, community, dance the may pole, do ritual, dance to music, and meet others of like-minds. This year the festival was held at the Florence Mountain Park just outside of Florence, Colorado which is about a half-hour drive from Colorado Springs, Colorado or Pueblo, Colorado. On 200 Acres of City and County Forest with a river, panoramic views of the mountains, and many clearings, there was plenty of room for attendees to camp, do ritual, have fire circles, drum circles, concerts, and a merchant area. Featured performances for the festival were The Gypsy Nomads, Lunar Fire, Kenny Klein, Tuatha, The Stone Walls, Heart Beat, Skean Dubh, Lara Jai and the Mountain Trance Medicine Band. Saturday there was a handfasting of the May King and Queen as well as the infamous May Pole dance that they hope to eventually become the breakers of the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest May Day Dance. The Event, while open to the public, was not ticketed at the gate – in order to attend you had to pre-purchase a ticket from the web site before the event. Children under 12 were free. Primitive and RV Camping was available for all attendees and merchants were offered spaces in the vending area. Beltania is held annually by the Living Earth Church, Inc.

Saturday and Sunday – Merchants were up and bustling throughout Saturday with prosperity in the air, we were slammed at the bodypainting booth knowing there were also two other booths doing face painting too that appeared quite busy. Today was the big day with an amazing procession of the May Queen on the May Pole around the Center of the Universe and the planting of the Pole. The actual handfasting of the May King and Queen added incredible love and passion to the ritual. The May Pole dance, while chaotic at moments (had two circles going around the pole and some reversal of directions causing weaving and energy tangles) – was stunningly beautiful, magical, enchanting, fertile, and quite prosperous – so much that it actually initiated some life-giving rains in the evening. Sweat lodges and incredible workshops I was told were abound and quite fantastic that I missed as was swamped with doing art with my comrades. The stage was teeming with some of the best performances around all day and night long starting with a children’s concert at noon, followed by Skean Dubh, then by Orpheus Choir, Pandora Celtica, Kenny Klein, Lara Jai, Mountain Trance Medicine Band, and an explosive re-set of The Gypsy Nomads. Then with a loss of a sense of time, Lunar Fire processed in and did a music ritual with fire spinning, dance, stilts, and ethereal performance as they hit stage with an enchantment captivating all around. What a most explosive day. At Midnight we hit the bembe-styled Drawing Down the Moon whre I got a good blessing of a cracked coconut atop my head – refreshing and purifying, cold and direct. On to the All night drumming and dancing around the Wild Meadows – we were awake until the light of day. Sunday was a beautiful day quite busy with the merchants winding down and closing up shop. I heard a few good workshops were held, again that I missed as I was busy breaking down camp and the booth. The Mother’s Day and Closing Ritual was extra special and involved alot of bonding and celebrating of our mother’s for giving birth to us all. It ended with a passing of the Bridgit’s flame from Ireland to individual candles to bring back to our hearths. Officially closing at noon the rest of the day was sweet farewells and much work at cleaning up site and breaking down camps. Saturday: Rating 4.5 Stars out of 5. Sunday: Rating: 3 Stars out of 5. [ About the Rating System ]

Saturday @ Beltania 2010

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