- Pagan Spirit Gathering
The Pagan Spirit Gathering (PSG) is one of the
United States's oldest and largest nature spirituality festivals.Cite book| edition = Revised & Updated| chapter = Pagan Spirit Gathering (PSG)| publisher = Penguin | isbn = 0143038192| pages = 584| authorlink = Margot Adler| last = Adler| first = Margot| title = Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America| location = New York| date = 2006] Since its inception in 1980 it has been held from Sunday to Sunday during the week around summer solstice, organized by Circle Sanctuary. At first, the festivals were held at Eagle Cavein Grant County Wisconsin, but it outgrew the facilities and in 1997 moved to a location near Athens, Ohioat Wisteria.
Children, tweens, and young elders
PSG has an extensive program specifically for visitors under 18 year of age, grouped into three categories. The children's day care facilities serve those under 7 year old, a pavilion or two is provided (with some guided activities) for the Tweens (8-12) and the Young Elders (13-18) have a Teen Center with snacks and other ameneties. Workshops are listed with age limits or other recommendations for participants. Most workshops are usually open to Young Elders, and many are open to Tweens and children. Minors can also have limited access to the fire spinning activities if they get permission from their guardian(s).
afety & rules
The PSG registration process includes agreeing to abide by rules set down by Circle Sanctuary, mostly for the safety and health of the participants. Some rules, such as those regarding alcohol and drugs or the nudity of minors, are put in place to assure the legality of the festival under federal and state laws. The safety and health of the participants is further protected by volunteer first-aid staff (including several doctors and registered nurses that attend PSG), counseling staff and the Guardians of the Sacred Circle (PSG safety enforcers).
PSG is clothing-optional throughout most of the campsite. Not everyone goes skyclad, but several do. There are some limitations for minors (in more private circumstances where adults are also present) in order to assure compliance with Ohio state law.
At PSG, each adult must perform four hours of community service or equivalent (as determined by Circle Sanctuary staff) during the course of the week. These periods of time are referred to as "workshifts". Many people do more than required, such as those teens who do workshifts though not required to.
The Wisteria campground has private showers, a swimming pond and a coffeehouse. During PSG several vendors sell their cuisine and at night there is always a campfire with drumming and dancing. Along the main road there is an endless string of merchants who peddle their wares.
When the week is through, everyone packs up their tents and says good-bye for an entire year. The schedule reads:
"10AM Final Town Meeting and Closing Ritual at Town Green. "Come and join the community in a ritual preparation for our departure and transition back into mundania."
[http://www.circlesanctuary.org/psg/ Pagan Spirit Gathering]
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