Celebrating 30 Years of Beltane Fire

This year’s Beltane Fire Festival will be our thirtieth, and – in a feat of mathematics that boggles our hippyish minds – next year will mark 30 years since the first Beltane staged by our community too.

To say we’re excited about these firey milestones is a bit of an understatement: we fully intend to make the whole of the coming 12 months a grand celebration of thirty years of Beltane fire!

We’d love you to join in, so do take a look at what we’re planning…


How are we celebrating?

Back in November we invited our members to share ideas on how we could celebrate. Since then they have bubbled into a lovely collection of plans. We’ll be sharing more on all of these in time, and we’re bound to add more, but for now, here’s a quick glance at what we’ve got cooking!

For Beltane Fire Festival 2017:

  • Making our thirtieth Beltane Fire Festival as stunning and special as ever. Book your ticket now, or join us and make it happen.
  • Building a bigger-than-ever-before fire arch (and we mean *big*).
  • Making Calton Hill even more beautiful on the night, thanks to a dedicated team of Hillusphere volunteers.
  • Trying out a range of new ways to convey the meaning and story behind our event, on the night and in advance – with photo galleries, emails to ticketholders in advance, plus information boards and bigger leaflets for the audience on Calton Hill.

Launching some very pretty things:

  • Our special logo to celebrate 30 years of fire, made for us by BFS member The Liquid Pixel (Jean-Pierre Abrahams), featuring the outline of one of the festival’s founders, Angus Farquhar.
  • A stunning, specially designed poster and flyer for Beltane that you’ll be seeing very soon.
  • An archive of thousands of photos taken by our volunteers at our festivals from across the past ten years – (not just the Facebook-friendly ones!), launching soon.

Telling our story and reaching out to the wider community:

  • Holding a ‘Beltane Community Open Day’ on the afternoon of Saturday 29 April on Calton Hill to make Beltane an all-weekend celebration for everyone.
  • Other events to reach out to the local Edinburgh community, like the ‘Weaving Imbolc’ event we held earlier this month at the Storytelling Centre, and hopefully one or two key talks and discussion events later in the year.

Skill sharing among our members and volunteers:

  • Running workshops for our members across the coming year. We’ve already held a workshop on willow-work and promoted a series of drumming sessions; in the coming month we’re running sessions on fire safety, movement and neid fire skills; and there will be more to come across the summer (including a lovely session with our friends from the Incorporation of Candlemakers of Edinburgh).
  • Exploring other ways to record and share skills, knowledge and our history across BFS members old and new – on and offline.

Events for Beltane Fire Society members and volunteers:

  • Holding celebrations like the lovely wee pot luck feast and club night for BFS members that took place back at the beginning of February, reviving our tradition of Imbolc community events.
  • Holding community fire gatherings across the year, hopefully welcoming some Beltaners from across our 30 year history to share their tales.
How can you get involved?

To get involved, come along to our Open Meeting on Sunday 26 February and find out about all the opportunities there are to help create our beautiful festival for the thirtieth time – or buy a ticket for Beltane Fire Festival 2017 itself, and witness it.

It’s going to be special, we promise.

2 thoughts on “Celebrating 30 Years of Beltane Fire

  1. Salutations to all co-creators of BFS! Also, be aware that fabulous fire festivals are alive and well in the USA. The celebration of our week-long heritage Autumn Equinox Festival of Vinotok is the oldest known large fire celebration and ritual ized communal ancient pantheistic and animistic ceremonies currently extant. It has preceded and is the inspiration for Burning Man, was in place and practice before the Beltane Fire Society and all other known, new contemporary expressions of ancient archetypal embodiment and animistic all Community ceremonies. For 33 years we have celebrated the embodiment of the Green Man, of the Great Goddess Harvest Mother, the Earth Dragon, the giant effigy Cruach, who is tried and burned at the Village Crossroads after a week of feasting, dancing in the streets, women’s sacred wilderness and Red Tent ceremonies, Harvest Mother communions and men’s sacred fire and runequest rituals.. For decades we have celebrated these Norse, Celtic, Germanic, Slavic and Northern Tradition Rites of Passage of our ancestors and Village founders. All of these are local, Grassroots created Earth honoring and Eco-Justice rituals. Please remember your American predecessors, Community Animation Artists, Ritualist and mythographers. Visit us at our Facebook page: VINOTOK, Crested Butte, Co. Founding Drector, Marcie Telander, MA, LPC, REAT, DAPA–Vinotok Festival and Earth Wisdom Institute, Mystery School and Secular Ministry: http://www.earthwisdominstitute.org


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