Vinotok announces its Harvest Mother and Green Man for 2020
For this incredibly transformative year, Vinotok has tapped two very special people, specifically selected for the energies they exude to lead us through these fiery times.
Kat Bernier is our powerful Harvest Mother, the embodiment of the divine feminine, and symbol of the more positive way forward embracing right relationship with the land. Ecologist and poet, Kat calls in her fierce Norse heritage to the task. Be on the lookout for Kat’s original poetry in your Community Feast box and on the Celebration of the Harvest Mother radio show on Tuesday, September 15 from 6 to 7 p.m.
Brandon Johanns is our kind and gentle Green Man, elevating the current paradigm of the destructive masculine to that of thoughtfulness, generosity and introspection. He’s a lover of animals, so poke your head into Mountain Tails to wave hello. Brandon begins his journey as Green Man a bit earlier than other years as he spreads the love through delivering Gratitude Gifts. Listen up to Liar’s Night on KBUT Thursday, September 17 from 6 to 7 p.m. to get more juicy details on Brandon.
Gratitude Gifts from the Green Man
It all begins with gratitude.
Express your gratitude to your friends, family, co-workers, the cashier at the grocery store, the person who was kind to you on the street—whomever! This year’s Green Man hand delivers Gratitude Gifts with a special blessing from him printed with original artwork from Peggy Morgan Stenmark, and a small token hand selected by the Green Man (examples might be a beautiful poem, a treasured object from nature, or a hunt for a magical find in the forest) to the people of your choosing, leaving them secretly on their physical doorstep. Think of them as a Vinotok Valentine sent by our very own Cupid. Let’s love up our community by sending Gratitude Gifts all around! Gifts delivered in secret between Sunday, August 6 to Saturday, August 19, but may be ordered the week preceding. Due to the whimsical nature of Gratitude Gifts, specific gifts cannot be chosen. Purchase at www.vinotok.org through a $5 donation per gift.
While Vinotok Week is officially Sunday, September 13 through Sunday, September 20 for our events broadcast on KBUT, preparation practices begin now with the extension of Gratitude Gifts, purchasing Community Feast Box tickets, and visiting www.vinotok.org for reading recommendations and journaling prompts this week, and upcoming information on Walking the Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage, the Fire Circle, and more next week.
Vinotok themes and schedules: Stoking the Fire Both Inside & Out
Themes of this year’s Vinotok
The themes of this year’s Vinotok are clear. From the cataclysmic fires we already find ourselves in—from the pandemic to climate change to dismantling the racial injustices that underlie our history—how do we want to rise up? After this hot and uncomfortable transformation—what do we want to become?
Vinotok holds a vision for the future. To begin, we must live in gratitude for all our gifts—from the earth, and from each other. From there we must seek balance and reciprocity with our natural world, where what we give back to the earth is as equal to or less than what we take. We must banish the hunger of greed and power that got us here, and beckon the more positive future we intend to manifest.
Part of regaining balance and practicing reciprocity with our natural world, is healing and nourishing the wounded places we have created in the land—our Wastelands—with our spirit. Physically, for us, while we deeply honor the cultural roots that built this community, we must also heal the Wastelands of our mining heritage that caused literal gashes in our place and pushed the Ute people from their home here.
To all of these ends, Vinotok takes form in a variety of ways this year.
—First, you will find our typical Vinotok Week group gathering events—“Stoking the External Fire”—transformed into interactive radio theatre on KBUT at 90.3 in Crested Butte, 88.7 in Gunnison, and can be accessed from anywhere in the world to listen live through www.kbut.org.
—Additionally, our Community Feast manifests in “Feast Boxes” you can order through our website, full of regional and organic raw materials to prepare your own feast, complemented with traditional recipes, blessings, original art and other goodies, as well as our very own Vinotok Village Zinfandel from local vintner Buckel Family Wines.
Yet this year calls out for us to stoke the internal fires as well, to be more thoughtful and contemplative, more mindful and intentional in how we manifest our more positive future. To these ends we have newly created a series of solitary, self-directed and interactive practices, aimed at fostering an internal environment within each of us that establishes the foundation for the future we desire to see.
—“Stoking the Internal Fire” includes an instructional and inspirational blog; meditations and journaling prompts; reading recommendations; and supplemental materials needed for activities including Walking the Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage and Gratitude Gifts from the Green Man. Opportunities exist both for community members in place in the Gunnison Valley as well as practices for our friends who live in other locales.
Connect to www.vinotok.org for Gratitude Gifts, Community Feast Box tickets and Stoking the Internal Fire supplemental materials as well as full schedules, Walking the Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage map, and additional information. We also have a Facebook page.
We also want to make extraordinarily clear there are no public gathering events planned for Vinotok, nor will there be. All events have been transferred to radio theatre on KBUT. Any additional supplementations, such as Walking the Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage are self-directed, individual, quiet endeavors.
Thus, with all of this, we declare that Vinotok 2020 will held Sunday, September 13 to Sunday, September 20 carrying the theme of “Stoking the Fire Both Inside & Out” with Gratitude; Balance & Reciprocity; and Banishing & Beckoning.
Vinotok 2020 activities and event schedule
Friday, September 18. $70 for a box for 2; $140 for a box for 4 ($35 per meal), each includes a complimentary bottle of Vinotok Village Zinfandel.
The locally and regionally harvested, organic Vinotok Community Feast is on with feast boxes! These delightful boxes are an experience in and of themselves, containing all the raw ingredients necessary for you and the loved ones of your household to prepare the full feast (excluding staples such as salt or oil) at home, accompanied by traditional recipes and instructions; special Vinotok bread from Mountain Oven; homemade pickles from Ellen’s Pickles; and flowers for the table.
Each box also contains a blessing from the Harvest Mother and Green Man; a traditional potica bread family recipe from generational Buttian Trudy Yaklich; and a Grump & Gratitude form all designed with original artwork and calligraphy by Peggy Morgan Stenmark.
Our very own local Buckel Family Wines has brewed a very special Vinotok Village Zinfandel for the occasion with original label artwork by Steph White. Add an extra bottle to your Feast Box for an additional $20 by visiting Mountain Spirits. Order at www.vinotok.org beginning Friday, September 4. Pick-ups at the Depot: Thursday, September 17, 6 to 8 p.m.; and Friday, September 18, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Stoking The Internal Fires
Walking the Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage
Balance & Reciprocity
Vinotok Altars, generously sponsored by local businesses, have been popping up on Elk Avenue for several years.
This year, the Vinotok Altars represent the archetypes of Vinotok, such as the Harvest Mother, Green Man, the Knight, the Earth Dragon and beyond! While some remain on Elk, others migrate into nature and our Wastelands, places scarred by our mining history in need of healing.
Grab a map from the website, and strike out on your own self-directed Vinotok Pilgrimage as it moves through a host of temporary art installations throughout the area. Each stop offers mythological information and instructions for a special activity. Then, in the spirit of balance and reciprocity, leave a sentiment of gratitude for the land that holds that altar.
Altars to be installed Sunday, September 13 with maps and supplemental activity and mythological information at www.vinotok.org.
The Fire Circle
Banishing & Beckoning
Each year at Vinotok we banish our grumps by writing them on slips of paper, stuffing Grump Boxes stashed throughout town, and burning them with the actual Grump (assuming he’s found guilty at the Trial). This year, a singular Grump Box will be at the Vinotok Fire Circle at the Four-way Stop, along with the Grump itself, beginning Sunday, September 13.
There, walk the labyrinth, get rid of your grumps, and hang your blessings and beckonings on the community prayer flag. Activities on the Vinotok Pilgrimage of the altars lead into the Fire Circle with supplemental instructions on the website.
Please note there will be no public burning of the Grump. But please be assured, your Grumps, collectively with the rest of the community’s, will be transformed.
Stoking the external fires
Activities during Vinotok Week
Sunday, September 13: Vinotok Week officially begins! The Grump and altars for Walking the Way will be installed this day so you may begin your Vinotok Pilgrimage throughout the week.
Monday, September 14: Vinotok—Myth, Meaning & Ritual: 6 to 7 p.m. on KBUT. Discover the secrets behind the flame. Learn the ancient lore, origins, history and mystery. Call your questions in to KBUT for a live Q&A.
Tuesday, September 15: Celebration of the Harvest Mother: 6 to 7 p.m. on KBUT. Celebrate the Harvest Mother with a radio theatre presentation of this year’s chosen, discussions, poetry and storytelling of the earth mother archetype. Call your questions in to KBUT for a live Q&A.
Wednesday, September 16: Frank Orazem Memorial Storytelling Evening: 6 to 7 p.m. on KBUT. This year Vinotok is ecstatic to present Phyllis Charlene Spann Guerrieri reading stories from her book, Pure Joy.
Thursday, September 17: The Botsie Spritzer Memorial Invitational Liar’s Contest: 6 to 7 p.m. on KBUT. Vinotok curates a list of champions from previous Liar’s Night performances for a judged radio competition and the declaration of the quintessential Vinotok Liar’s Champion in all the land.
Friday, September 18: Community Feast & Handfasting Ceremony: 6 to 7 p.m. on KBUT. While you’re stirring up delectable food from your Community Feast Box, tune into KBUT for a non-denominational Community Handfasting Ceremony, music with Lizzy Plotkin, and call-in toasts and dedications.
Saturday, September 19: Trial of the Grump: 8 to 9 p.m. on KBUT.
Has it been a while since you really heard the Trial of the Grump? Catch every word in a radio theatre production at its finest!
If you’ve always wanted to be a part of Vinotok, but the larger crowds felt daunting—this is your year! In particular we need artists to build our altars for the Walking the Way: Vinotok Pilgrimage for the community’s self-directed journeys through the temporary art installations.
We also need folks for helping to assemble the Community Feast Boxes.
Additionally, we need folks inclined to gather greenery and dried things to make decorative bundles for businesses and other areas.
Please email email@example.com to enlist your services. Please know we are practicing the strictest of health precautions in all of our preparations, with the vast majority of our volunteer opportunities activities you can complete on your own with no gathering at all.