Saturday, August 6, 2011

Lughnassadh 2011

Lughnassadh Altar
So Lughnassadh did not go quite as expected. Just about everything that could go wrong, did. For starters, our location, Illinois Beach State Park, got shut down due to storm damage. So we quickly changed to Osterman Beach here in Chicago in hopes that it would be relatively quiet (it was) and hopefully cooler than inland (it wasn't.) Then due to yet another storm, Jack and Chris' basement flooded and they needed to do clean up and were unable to attend. We thought about canceling altogether but since this whole year has been messed about because of the weather, we decided to carry on and Colleen and I decided to go ahead and run the ritual ourselves (gulp!)

Our new web logo thing I made
We did scale down a bit though as we would be carrying everything for the rite on public transportation, so we dropped the potluck. I made the amazing Irishgasm cupcakes and prizes for the bake-off and small gold medallions for the take away (which you can just about see on the Altar in the pic above, in the lower right hand corner. We didn't get many pictures as we were too busy making sure we remembered everything else.) We didn't have the Grove altar things so we brought some of our own stuff, and used the tree behind as our Tree. For the rite itself we used Jack's Triple Triads, and the Lugh Invocation we have used in the past. I did take out the marriage part out though as I wasn't sure it fit which what we were doing and I am a bit iffy on the concept in general. This was however overwhelmingly accepted as a good idea by those attending the rite, so a good call I guess.

The bake- off was a bit of a wash as only three people showed up besides Colleen and me. I don't know if it was the heat or the venue change but we only had two things for the bake-off so I just gave Jennifer the gold medal for her very excellent banana bread, and Colleen the silver (for helping me with the rite plus she made an oath to bake her offering and offer it at Autumn Equinox) and we offered both offerings to Lugh.

The Grove Omen
Despite our nervousness the rite went pretty well, I did the Opening prayer, the meditation, the Gatekeeper invocation (Mannanan Mac Lir of course) and the Well, Tree and Fire, the Omen and return Blessing,  Colleen led the songs, did the Earth Mother invocation, Outsiders, and the Sacrifice, Jennifer did the Bardic invocation (to Brighid) and we divvied up the Kindreds and Lugh's Invocations among everyone. All went well until the sacrifice,  but it was accepted the third time around when we offered sufficient cupcakes (6) and sufficient banana bread (2 or 3 pieces I think?) some raisin bread was also offered, and fruit and ale. Ah well we usually get there in the end! The Grove Omen was good (I remembered to give offerings to the Kindreds this time!) and I asked for blessings from Lugh for us and we asked for blessings for those not present and then we shared the remaining cupcakes and banana bread and some lemonade.

After the rite the idea was to hang around the beach and play games and eat but with the potluck off and it being horribly hot and muggy (even on the lake front which should tell you something about how yucky it was) we all chatted for a bit but left soon after the ritual was over to go find some AC and a place to nap! (okay those were my goals anyway.) But we did get a new person interested in coming to Autumn Equinox (yay!) and Colleen and I survived running our first rite with only a few days notice so I think despite everything going pear shaped, the Onions prevailed once again!


  1. Sounds like you did a great job - did The Onions proud! Congrats!

  2. Well I learned from the best!:)