TWIN FALLS — Temperatures in the 80s make it feel like summer, but the official start of the season, summer solstice, is this Friday.
The Summer Solstice Pagan Fest celebrated the changing of the seasons at City Park on Saturday with rituals, food, vendors, lively conversation and laughter.
This festival grew from a Pagan Fest held in February.
“Lots of people didn’t know we had such a large Pagan community,” said Solaris Koffer who owns the Kindred Cauldron in Twin Falls, about the response from February’s event. That prompted the summer celebration to move from an indoor venue to the park, so more people could gather.
The opening circle ritual welcomed the sun as participants started by facing east, then south, west and north. Koffer hailed the brightest day of the year, also welcoming fertility and growth.
The park was full of Tarot readers, Reiki practitioners and artists.
Jennifer Davis of Wendell offered readings, though she also has a space to do Reiki by appointment on Eastland Drive. When Davis does a reading, a lot depends on her customer, she explained. That includes which deck of cards she uses, from seven in total. “It depends on the person’s questions,” she said, along with her own intuition.
A selection of tie-dye clothing was on display at The Green Lady booth. Ashlee Tanner, Filer, does the tie-dying herself.
Dragon Fly Bruja, Diana Adams of Bliss, offered her tea mixtures for sale, along with hand-crafted dolls, and protection spheres. The spheres, which start as clear holiday ornaments, are meticulously filled with bits and pieces.
“I use funnels and tweezers,” Adams said about inserting the items through the small hole. “They contain all the things to protect your home.”
Laurie Sue Evans handcrafts jewelry as part of the Aunt Hill Collection. The play on words has its own story, she related. “My niece used to come to my house because that’s where the ant hills were.” Thus, ant hill became Aunt Hill Collection.
Presentations such as wildcrafting and creating sigils throughout the day mixed with raffle drawings and a question and answer panel called “Ask the Witches!” Not that it was evident who the witches were just by looking at those in attendance.
“Some don’t realize Pagans are people they see every day,” Koffer said.
A big part of holding the festival was to encourage a greater sense of community among local Pagans, Koffer said. “We want to help them feel visible, feel sane, and know they have a safe community here.”