Where in the Appalachian Bioregion are we going?

Where in the Appalachian Bioregion are we going? The consensus was for the White Mountain National Forest (in the Northeast), or the Appalachian states of Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Georgia. Spring Council selected a site in North Eastern Tennessee.

If you're not familiar with the gauntlet on the road into the gathering, and want to avoid a mandatory court appearance ticket click here.

For the Howdy Folks and directions to the gathering, click here. For the United States Forest Service Incident Command website with groovy maps and updates, click here.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hipstories on July 5 @ The Gathering

If you're new to the gathering or just missed it, every year about dark-thirty on July 5 people gather at Granola Funk Theater to share hipstories.  The last few years the format has been to start with 1972 and have people share a story or five from the first gathering. Then we move on to 1973, then 1974, then 1975  and, well you get the point.  Everyone is invited to share their stories.  Some of the folks who share are amazing storytellers and learning our hipstories from many, many mouths is the best way to get a sense of the long strange trip it's been.  

This blog is really just an attempt to share the wealth of wisdom and stories I have learned at the gathering based on my own mistakes or from other family who shared with me the mistakes and successes they've had as well as things that many gatherers need to know.

One of the earlies (earlies are folks who were at the gathering in 1972) is a master story teller.  Here's a hipstory he emailed around a few weeks ago.  

******* Begin Garrick's Hipstory **********

Dear, Dear Friends of the Rainbow,

One of the true Original Rainbows died last Friday. David Lescht, AKA David Light, was one of the original Rainbow Visionaries.

In the earliest days of the Rainbow adventure -- two years before the First Rainbow Gathering in Colorado in 1972, and a month before the Vortex Festival, Davey had put out invitations to a Gathering at Emerald Lakes in the Three Sisters Wilderness. We looked on maps, there were no '"Emerald Lakes." But there were Green Lakes and about 120 of  'us' made it up the 8 mile trail into that nascent Gathering. It was an incredibly beautiful scene, and for many of us it was a clue, a hint, a sign and an omen that the Vision of the Rainbow could become real. We made beautiful meals and prayer circles; we plunged into the icy waters of the 'Emerald' lakes; we did a group ascension of The South Sister.

And at the end of that Gathering, some eighty strong we arrived at the set up for Vortex 1 with a force of community and strength of purpose that helped make the Vortex Festival the amazing success it was. It was at Vortex that the Gathering took on the name Rainbow. There are so many more stories to tell about Davey. He had such a measured sense of his Spirituality. He was such a balanced character. He was the cool, even-minded one among us. He was kind and sincere and he figured out how to translate that into service for others.

He founded Outside In in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and began bringing music to people who were institutionalized. People in nursing homes, hospitals, hospices, women's shelters, youth 'reformatories,' prisons -- anywhere people were shut in, Davey and his team came and brought the Light of Music. He hired local bands and national acts. He brought Santana to the Maximum Security and Michael Franti to the the youth prison. In the past decade he produced over two hundred live shows each year for those unable - for whatever reason - to get out to hear the music.

What a guy. We all dream of doing that kind of good. And he figured out how to do it for real. He never gave up his Rainbow Roots. He never quit believing in Peace and Love.

He died of a heart attack at home. He had four beautiful children and a loving relationship with his wife Sara.

The man is gone, but the good he did lives on.


Link to newspaper article.  

For some other hipstories, click here.

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