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Sparks Park

kidsmaypoleUpdated May 4, 2018!

Blue Ridge Beltane presents Sparks Park! This family-centered area provides a safe and fun space for youth 17 years and younger while parents are able to attend workshops and enjoy festival offerings. Children may stop by whenever Sparks Park is open for playshops, storytelling, sports, games, small world creation centers, fairy gardens, water and bubble play, and pop-up activity centers. Check in for pop-up playshops offered by drop-in festival community members.

Children 4 years of age and older may stay at Sparks Park without a parent during scheduled activities. Kids who attend must be able to stay alone and do an activity mostly independently. Younger children are welcome with an adult or older child who can supervise and help them.

As always, we encourage parents, older siblings, and the community to get involved and volunteer to work with the young people in Sparks Park! Be a part of making this space a lively children’s village! If each parent takes a 1-2 hour shift, everyone shares the fun of enjoying workshops and sparking the creative fire of our incredible youth community. Be sure to visit Sparks Park during the Meet & Greet on Friday from 1-1:30pm to get the details.

Your presence and participation will be noticed and greatly appreciated – not just by the Blue Ridge Beltane committee but also by the children! After all, the children are the next generation and are a huge part of a flourishing pagan community.

Send in a workshop or event proposal and share you knowledge with the children in our pagan community!

All youth are encouraged to attend rituals and entertainment with the community. Here’s the latest news on what to expect in Sparks Park 2018!

 

Sparks Park Activities for 2018

Schedule-At-A-Glance

Friday, May 18, 2018
1-1:30pm: Welcome to Sparks Park – Meet & Greet
1:30-2:30pm: Rhythm and Poetry I Playshop – Wyld tha Bard
4:15pm: Gnomes and Fairies Playshop – Jane Quadri and Willow RavenWolf

Saturday, May 19, 2018
9:30am: Morning Verse
10am: Arts and Crafts Playshop – Wyld tha Bard
11am: Crowns and Wands Playshop – Jane Quadri and Willow RavenWolf
1pm: Children’s Maypole
4pm: Fire! Playshop – Willow RavenWolf
5:30-7pm: Family Fire Circle at Sparks Park

Sunday, May 20, 2018
9:30am: Morning Verse
10am: Rhythm and Poetry II Playshop – Wyld tha Bard
11am: Scavenger Hunt and Bird Seed Feeders – Jane and volunteers

 
Please note: Some activities are offered more than once or can be done outside scheduled times. Please check the schedule in your program or check in with the Sparks Park coordinator Jane when you get to the festival.

 

FRIDAY, May 18

1-1:30pm: Welcome to Sparks Park – Meet & Greet
Sign in your children and sign up to volunteer!

1:30pm: Rhythm and Poetry Playshop
Wyld tha Bard
Wyld tha Bard intends to create an interactive space where each child is encouraged (but not forced) to create their own poem and then share it with others as they feel called to. Our guest will begin the playshop by teaching a few earthy folk songs to sing together as a group. There will be opportunities to engage in creating rhythm, dancing, and drumming as a collective. Children can then share an original story/poem either in a large group setting or in smaller groups with their peers offering rhythmic support. Wyld tha Bard wants to provide an open, loving, and free space where children of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life can commune together in an inclusive environment that encourages the unadulterated flow of creativity. He aims to touch the heart of all involved, to inspire, and to let each child know that they matter and that they carry their own special unique gift, as he encourages them to be confident and happy in their vessels.

Wyld tha Bard is a 24-year-old performing artist from Midlothian, VA. He’s been performing in various contexts from the age of 3 when he used to write and direct family holiday plays that featured his cousins and sister. He is currently a freelance writer, singer, rapper, dancer, producer, and spoken word artist. He has experience working with kids at various summer camps through the local YMCA. He admits that he really is just a four year old in a young man’s body. He loves the energy that children bring. He aims to keep his own inner child alive and well as he creates and manifests through his soul’s expression.

4:15-5pm: Gnomes and Fairies Playshop with Jane Quadri and Willow RavenWolf
Make Gnomes and Fairy dolls using wooden forms, corks, felt, and found materials.

Jane Quadri has always had a strong connection with nature and spirit. She has been a practicing pagan for more than 25 years and counts Starhawk and Waldorf-education founder Rudolf Steiner as two of her greatest influences. She has taught and cared for children for over 40 years in addition to raising her own daughter. Nowadays, she also has the joy of getting to spend time with her grandson. Jane is enthusiastic about sharing her vision for the children’s activities area with the Blue Ridge Beltane festival and community.

Willow RavenWolf has always enjoyed working with children. She was a very involved Girl Scout Leader for 13 years. She also acted as a youth group leader and Sunday school teacher. She cherishes the chance to work with children again at Sparks Park, and she looks forward to exchanging knowledge with them during the playshops.

 

SATURDAY, May 19

9:30am: Morning Verse
Jane Quadri
This verse brings the community together in unity through meaningful words, affirmations, gentle movement and song, and it sets the tone for the day.

10am: Arts and Crafts Playshop
Wyld tha Bard
Wyld tha Bard offers a playshop focused on visual art. He feels this mode of art is just as vital as performance art is to the overall evolution and growth of everyone. He will encourage each child to simply create a visual form of something. No rules. No guidelines. Just freedom to create. Following the arts and crafts time, attendees will be given the chance to share their creations with their peers if you like.

See bio above.

11am: Crowns and Wands Playshop
Jane Quadri and Willow RavenWolf
Create crowns and wands for the Maypole dance from ribbons, flowers, and glitter.

1pm: Children’s Maypole
Dance and sing around the children’s maypole. Children and families of all ages welcome!

4pm: Fire! Playshop
Willow RavenWolf
Learn to make a fire safely without using fire starters first, and then forge fire starters to take home. (Parents, please be mindful and place these items in a safe area for transportation home.)

See bio above.

5:30-7pm: Family Fire Circle at Sparks Park
Bring food, songs, and stories to share!

 

SUNDAY, May 20

9:30am: Morning Verse
Jane Quadri
See previous description

10am: Rhythm and Poetry II Playshop
Wyld tha Bard
Wyld tha Bard continues the adventures of poetry and story-telling through rhythm, dance, drumming, and performance.

11am: Scavenger Hunt and Bird Seed Feeders
Volunteers will lead festival youngsters on a brief scavenger hunt collecting treasures and supplies. The walk will culminate in the crafting of bird seed feeders to take home and feed local avian fauna (or hang as a blessing of gratitude among our new festival campgrounds home).

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