What a difference a year makes!
This year, since we weren’t facilitating a ritual, our table and altar were a bit simpler. But despite scaling back, our altar devoted to honoring aspects of our region was still very well received. During our ritual last year we gave offerings to those aspects of North Carolina and the season that we loved – animals, change, beauty, and abundance. This year we provided offerings at our table so others could do the same – fresh water, grains, candles, and incense. It was such an honor and a pleasure to observe people giving offerings all weekend, giving of their own prayers and energy to our little space.
We welcomed people to our space all weekend, explaining to them TAPA’s mission of fostering greater community support and connections. We discussed how we hope to help other area groups in their own mission statements, and to meet our own personal goal to attend more events and rituals and to offer support where support may be needed. We told people all about our events page, encouraging them to add their own events, too. (If it’s one thing that we’ve learned it’s that the community has no shortage of awesome happenings, all the time!) Finally, we shared with our visitors our dream of connecting groups to people, people to groups, groups to groups, and everything in between. We’re trying very hard to emphasize community and connectivity, and people seemed very happy with this message.
But of course, we were busy with workshops, too! Wasn’t this year’s selection of workshops just fabulous? We attended a Heathen Blot, talked about mental health, group leadership, the runes, and more! In between sessions we’d all gather back at our table, sharing our new wisdom and friendships. And we each taught our own workshops, too. Heather facilitated the incredibly popular Lycanthropy workshop, Amanda shared her views on Christo-Paganism, and Alisa continued last year’s discussion on the Spirits of Place, this time with an Urban focus.
Another treat from this year’s PPD was our neighbor, the ! We’ve partnered with the Clan in the past and hope to do so more in the future. From the very beginning, Tanaria and her Clan have been supportive of TAPA’s mission and long-term vision, and it was great to refer people to her throughout the weekend. We circled with the Clan as they facilitated the group ritual on Saturday, and those of us who were unable to join the circle cheered from our booth!
Overall, it was an amazing weekend. We made great connections, made new friends, gave hugs to old friends, learned so much, and just enjoyed ourselves so much! The talented crew of PPD volunteers all deserves gold stars this year because this event was extraordinary. We heard people comment all weekend about extra signs, good access to water and food, a talented emcee, great booths, engaging workshops, and just a positive event in general! If you’re interested in helping out with next year’s PPD, be sure to mosey on over to their website and stay tuned for the time, date, and location of the very first planning meeting for PPD 2016.
Thanks to all who came to our booth, who gave offerings at the altar, for the great entertainment (we have a perfect view!) to good friends, new friends, old friends, to volunteers and staff, and to all who made this weekend awesome! It makes us so excited for the Triangle Pagan community – we all have a lot to be proud of!
PS - and if you want to read more about this year's PPD, but from the point of view of an attendee, be sure to check out regional writer Thorn Mooney's blog over at Patheos!