Atheopagans and friends are welcomed to join us for a potluck early winter gathering and nontheist Yule ritual on Sunday, Dec. 9, at the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, Connie Barbour room (1606 Bonita Ave, at the corner of Cedar St. in Berkeley—map link here). The gathering will convene at 2 pm, with the ritual at 3:30.
Please bring a dish and something to drink to share. We would appreciate it if you bring non-disposable eating ware, as well, so we have very little waste from the event.
Please no red wine, thanks—the venue is concerned about stains.
This event is our second effort to engage more local Atheopagans and friends in person, following our very successful Harvest event. We hope to see many of you there!
Due to the low turnout for Moon Meet 2018, those of us in attendance at that event had a discussion about how best to make local Atheopagan in-person events more accessible and attractive. Some of our conjectures were that it was asking too much to expect people to come for a multiple-day event for their first gathering with us, and that the site for Moon Meet was too remote for some of the prospective attendees.
I mention these concerns because we are a far-flung community, distributed across the globe. Any lessons we learn can be used in creating your own events and gatherings*.
Accordingly, three of us planned a Harvest gathering on the autumnal equinox which was only a few hours long, required little commitment (a potluck dish), and was closer to a population center of group members than to where I happen to live.
The result was lovely! There were somewhere between 15 and 20 of us, and we had a nice Harvest potluck feast followed by a ritual to celebrate the season. Very eclectic group, including several folks I’d never met before, and a couple of charming kids.
We declared our individual personal “harvests” for the season, and the things we are grateful for. We celebrated community. And we enjoyed each other’s company with song, food and drink.
Success! We’ll be doing more of these gatherings going forward and look forward to meeting more of our local Atheopagans and friends to celebrate the seasons.
Thanks particularly to Kaigi-Ron and Joe for their help in organizing this event.
*And I do encourage you to create your own events and gatherings! For longer and more complex events, an Event Planning Guide with budget and planning timeline spreadsheets are available on the Resources page.
If you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area in the United States, we welcome you to join us for a potluck Harvest celebration on Sept. 22! It will be held from 2 to 6 pm at the Orchard Picnic Area in Tilden Park, Berkeley. Bring a potluck dish to share and something to drink*, your own plates, cups and cutlery, and any items you would like to place on the group Focus to represent your harvested achievements for this year.
One of the lessons we learned from Moon Meet this year is to hold events that require less of a time and logistical commitment, so we’re doing Harvest this year in an area not far from where many of our Facebook group members live, and only lasting a few hours. Please RSVP in the comments if you are coming, so we can plan for numbers!
If you’re too far away to be able to attend this event, I hope you will hold your own! Harvest is a great time to introduce friends to Atheopaganism through a community feast and a simple celebration ritual, giving thanks for all the year has brought us, including our friends and community. Just holding hands and expressing our gratitudes can be a very powerful ritual for people who aren’t used to them.
Check out the linked articles on Harvest (link in the first paragraph) for ideas, and be sure to ask questions if you need help! I wish you the happiest and most abundant of Harvest celebrations with your friends and family.
*Beer, cider and wine are welcome, but no hard alcohol, please.