Samhuinn, or Hallowe’en, was one of the two main festivals of the Celtic peoples. It marked the entry of winter; but, since the Celtic year began with winter, it marked also the entry of the New Year. Hence Samhuinn was probably of even greater importance than Beltane. Again, since the Celtic day began with night, the festival began on it’s eve. Samhuinn, in short, was the Celtic Hogmanay.
– F. Marian McNeill, The Silver Bough (vol. 3)
The harvests are about to begin, marking the start of the descent to Winter. The call of the Cailleach is growing louder, and the chill of winter is an ever present threat, even on the warmest summer days.
Samhuinn is a time of conflict and strife – of the battle between summer, as it revels in its last passionate throes, and winter, as it vies for control with the harsh, cold finality of its ice and snows.
Preparations for Samhuinn are beginning. Beltane Fire Society is looking for driven group organisers to help bring together a vision of Summer’s waning or Winter’s waxing … depending on your perspective!
We want to know your plans for a group – it could be the return of an old character or aspect of our story, something completely new, or a re-imagining of the old into the new.
We’re looking for those of you that can commit time, effort and ideas to shaping this year’s festival – to bring your plans for this event to the table, and help lead and guide others in celebrating this festival. Your role will involve organising volunteers, developing your story and key moments with the rest of the society, making props and costumes, choreography, music or rhythms, and giving a body and voice to our event. In return, we can offer you an amazing journey, learning new skills, meeting new people, and making a difference to others by helping them on their journey to celebrate the start of winter.
The application form is at the bottom of this entry, along with some guidelines on filling it in, and an example. But don’t let the paperwork put you off – the questions are straightforward, and there are no tricks – we just want to know as much about you and your plans so that we can get a feel for how the festival will fit together this year. You don’t have to have been an organiser for a BFS event before to apply, but we do want to know you’ve thought out your plans!
The deadline for applications is 5pm on Friday the 10th of August – applications should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
We will be having an informal gathering in the coming weeks for anyone who is interested in organising and wants to ask questions, try out their ideas or needs help applying. The blues, past group organisers, and board members will be there to help you along. Details to follow soon.
Looking forward to seeing your applications!
The Board and Blues