Vinotok is no longer nigh … it is now! This is a community celebration. Come be a part. We do this for you, for us. Happy Autumn Equinox everyone. Here’s to getting rid of our grumps, honoring our place spirit, joining hands as a community and celebrating the abundance we all enjoy. Let us return to balance in all ways.
Stoking the External Fires
Friday, September 16
Moving through the Archetypes: An Embodied Yoga Practice Exploring the Energy of Vinotok. 12-1:30 p.m. Totem Pole Park. $10.
Get charged and focused on the energy of the season through this embodied yoga practiced offered by certified instructor Ashley King. This practice focuses on the archetypes of Vinotok from the divine feminine represented in the Harvest Mother, to the sacred masculine of the Green Man. Find your wise woman in the Crone, the protective spirit in the Red Lady, and more, through poses and postures designed to strengthen these qualities in yourself. You’ll be ready to embark on your Vinotok Pilgrimage, and enjoy all the festivities of the week with intention.
Adornment of the Fire Circle. 4:30-6:30 p.m. Crossroads Fire Circle at the Four-Way. Free.
Vinotok’s Crossroads Fire Circle at the Four-Way is the centered point of our celebrations. It is the place where the Grump, bearing all the grievances of the day, is arraigned in the Grump Procession & Dedication. It is the place we walk the labyrinth and leave our grumps to be transformed in the fire. It is the focal point around which our Community Feast & Medieval Fair oscillates. It must be festooned! Join your community and lend a hand in decorating and adorning the Fire Circle with flowers and greenery in preparation for the week of festivities. Great kid event!
Saturday, September 17
Vinotok – Myth, Meaning & Ritual: 6:30- 8:30 p.m. Mallardi Cabaret Theatre. $10.
Everything you ever wanted to know about Vinotok! Join Vinotok Founder and Master Storyteller Marcie Telander to learn the secrets, ancient lore, origins and mystery of Crested Butte’s favorite festival and the all-community Harvest Celebration that is unlike any other in America. Come prepared to flow into the Dark Night of Dedication of the Grump following. Cash bar. Bring your own mug. For adults and mature young adults.
Dark Night of Dedication of the Grump: 8:30 p.m. Outside the Mallardi Cabaret Theatre. Free.
The Vinotok Theatre Troupe processes the Grump to the Crossroads Fire Circle in torchlight where he is charged with the grievances of the world and offered gratitude for his sacrifice. A somber night of ceremony and spectacle with performances by the women of the community. Please bring an offering such as a flower or herb bundle to help adorn the Grump, as well as your paper grumps you’d like to leave at the Fire Circle. Please note this is not a bonfire event.
Sunday, September 18 – Sunday of the Sacred Feminine
Celebration of the Harvest Mother. Vinotok Booth 10 a.m.-2 p.m. with performance at High Noon. Crested Butte Farmer’s Market. Free.
Celebrate the Sacred Feminine with the Harvest Mother at high noon featuring mummers, drummers, stilters, jesters and forest creatures presenting this year’s very pregnant Harvest Mother Peace Wheeler. All past Harvest Mothers, Harvest Babies and current pregnant women of the community, please come to be honored. A special Vinotok Booth features head wreath making, Grump Boxes for your grumps, information and feast tickets. Red Tent body art and body work for all pregnant women, past Harvest Mothers and Babies and community members. Great kid event!
Flight of Dragons Children’s Event. Harvest Mother Stage. Immediately following the Harvest Mother Celebration. Crested Butte Farmer’s Market. $10.
Calling all Dragons-in-Training! Don your best Dragon regalia and meet up at the Harvest Mother’s Stage directly after her Celebration. Bring noise makers, drums and rattles to let your Dragon self be known. Each Dragon-in-Training will get a special Dragon ID Badge and Dragon Stripe to identify your Tribe of Dragons. Hear stories of the Baby Dragons born from the Harvest Mothers, the importance of the Dragons in protecting our mountains, and send up a collective roar to the community. Receive a special Dragon Journal to record all your Beckonings for the upcoming year. Please bring water and wear walking shoes. Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. Purchase your token to participate at the Vinotok Farmer’s Market Booth and present it to the Mother of Dragons to participate!
The Goddess’ Red Tent: 6- 8 p.m. Wise Acre (160 Lower Allen Road). $10.
Calling all women! Come celebrate the goddess within, from the maiden to the crone. This year we will work with the archetypes of the transformational goddesses, those that destroy what does not work in our society and selves, thus creating a path for greater light. This is an evening of embodied movement, storytelling, mythology, creativity, sharing, bonding, and uniting. The world needs us! Bring your own goblet, plate, snacks and drink, chair (if you like or need) and / or pillow and blanket, as well as a journal and pen. Wear comfortable, relaxed clothes for sitting on the ground, dancing and stretching, and layers to stay warm as night falls (this is an outside event). Meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Four-Way to carpool. Event begins at 6. In case of active rain the event will be at the Mallardi.
Monday, September 19
The Botsie Spritzer Memorial Liar’s Contest: Doors at 7 p.m., party begins at 8:30 p.m. Lies begin at 9 p.m. at Kochevar’s. $10.
Kochevar’s transforms with community members telling tall tales, whoppers and adventure stories from the community with prizes for the best liar. The Green Man is announced. A naughty, raucous evening.
Tuesday, September 20
Frank Orazem Memorial Storytelling Evening: 7:30- 9 p.m. at the Crested Butte Mountain Heritage Museum. $10.
It all begins in stories from the people. The evening kicks off with social time of traditional Slovenian Potica bread from Kochevar and Yaklich recipes and hot chocolate. Learn of this year’s Green Spirit Award winners, Crystal Kotowski-Edmunds and Arvin Ram in a special presentation ceremony honoring their dedication to stewardship in our home place. Then gather together like in the old days, to hear back-when tales of Crested Butte and the surrounding area. Buttian Michelle “Lipstick” English shares about how the Crested Butte community kept her together. Because it is Vinotok, she can lie if she wants, but it wouldn’t be nearly as crazy as the truth. Lipstick first came to the Gunnison area as a freshman in high school, left for a time, and finally called this place home in 1984. For Lipstick, this is the only place she ever fit in and she’ll be telling us those stories. Bring your own mug.
Thursday, September 22 – The Autumn Equinox
Community Feast & Medieval Fair: Doors open at 3 p.m. at the Crossroads Fire Circle at the Four-way. To feast: $30 in advance; $35 at the door; $15 children 12 & under. General Admission (no food): $10
Step into a world between worlds at the Medieval Fair. The whole Vinotok cast will be there in their full regalia – stilt walkers, the Dragon and the Knight, the Green Man, Forest Creatures, and more! Doors open at 3 p.m. so you may come make a head wreath, get body art, draw a rune for the year, banish your grumps and beckon your desires by making community prayer flags. Liquor tent opens with our cash bar at 5 p.m. with our special Vinotok Village wine by Buckel Family Wines sold by the glass or bottle; plus mead, hard apple cider, and beer by the glass. At 5:30 p.m. the ceremonies begin with an All-Community Handfasting Ceremony with Marcie Telander, D.Div where couples, families, friends, partners and the entire community re-commit for a healthy, transforming future dedicated to each other and the earth. Following the ceremony, our feast of seasonal, organic, regional and sustainably grown vegetables and meats are served. While you eat, watch the Vinotok Passion Play of the age-old battle between the Earth Dragon and the Knight. We’ll have drumming, dancing, fire-spinning and cauldron fires after the play.
Logistics: Rain or shine. This is an outside event. Wear your warm Vinotok best! Bring your own utensils as none are provided, but please no outside alcohol or dogs. Bring your patience and an openness to a fluid time schedule – we are a community tribe, not a professional production company. Please note food service time is from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. If you have small children and need to bring pre-feast snacks, please do so. We will not be serving food after 7:30 p.m. as the cast must get ready for the play!
Ticket info: Tickets sold in person only at Rumors Coffee & Tea House, and September 18 at the Vinotok Farmer’s Market Booth. There are no online ticket sales nor may you reserve your ticket over the phone. To feast: $30 in advance; $35 at the door; $15 children 12 & under. General Admission (no food): $10. Our delicious food does sell out. An extremely limited number of $10 General Admission tickets are available on a first come, first serve basis at the gate for those who’d like to enjoy the festivities but will not be eating with us. But basically, we encourage you to buy a feast ticket, cuz, you know, eating together is a bonding thing.
Community Feast & Medieval Fair Schedule (but be flexible)
3 p.m. Feast doors open for wreathmaking, body art, runes, prayer flags
5 p.m. Liquor tent open
5:30 p.m. Community Handfasting Ceremony begins
6:30 p.m. Food Service begins
7:30 p.m. Food Service complete. Fire Performances & Passion Play begin
8:30 p.m. Drumming, dancing, fire spinning, cauldron fires begin
10:30 p.m. Feast ends
Stoking the Internal Fires
Walking The Way: A Vinotok Pilgrimage
Altars are found on Elk Avenue, the fringes of town and out into the wild. Find one altar and you’re on your way as each altar hosts a map, “How to Pilgrimage” information, mythology on the archetype of the altar, and a special corresponding activity. In visiting all the altar stops along the way, you’ll collect all the materials you need to conduct an inspiring and contemplative Vinotok. Meet characters such as the Green Man, Harvest Mother, Earth Dragon and the Knight. Activities range from making a head wreath or staff, a “Marrying the Land” ceremony, meditation and journal prompts, and special Grumps & Gratitudes forms. In the spirit of reciprocity with the land, you are invited to bring a small offering to each altar. You may also find suggestions for appropriate offerings, maps, all supplemental mythological and activity information at www.vinotok.org. A great kid activity with tons of fun art projects! (good for adults too).
Vinotok Altars are generously sponsored by Black Tie Ski Rentals, Mountain Earth, the Eldo, Slogar, Talk of the Town, the Breadery, Dogwood, Teocalli Tamale, Secret Stash, Kochevar’s, Mountain Spirits, Rooted Apothecary, Retail Therapy, Bonez, Mountain Tails, Magda Drewnowski, CPA and the T-Bar.
The Crossroads Fire Circle
The Crossroads Fire Circle at the Four-Way is the center point for our community’s celebrations and the site of a magnanimous public art installation created by Vinotok Grump Master and Visionary Artkitect Joe Bob Merritt. It will be installed by Friday, September 16 with the community coming together to decorate it with flowers and greenery at the free event, Adornment of the Fire Circle. The Grump itself will come to rest in his home for the week during the new event (also free) of the Dark Night of Dedication of the Grump on Saturday, September 17. Come interact with the Crossroads Fire Circle and the Grump itself throughout Vinotok Week from Friday, September 16 through the Community Feast on Thursday, September 22. Bring flowers and greenery to decorate the Fire Circle. Walk the Labyrinth to place your grumps directly into the Grump itself, or into the secured Grump Shrine. Then hang your Beckoning Prayer Flag. Altar activities on the Vinotok Pilgrimage culminate at the Crossroads Fire Circle.
Grump Boxes Are Out!
Got some grievances and gripes weighing you down? Get rid of them in the Grump Boxes! Grump Boxes found throughout town at the Crested Butte Post Office, Mountain Earth, Rumors Coffee & Tea House, Mountain Spirits, Ace Hardware, Secret Stash, Kochevar’s, Talk of the Town, Crested Butte Mountain Heritage Museum, The Daily Dose and the Vinotok Renaissance Booth at the Crested Butte Farmer’s Market (9/18). Grump Boxes will be collected Wednesday, September 22. You may also submit your grumps at the Grump Shrine at the Crossroads Fire Circle anytime Vinotok Week, including the Community Feast. Grumps will be ceremoniously disposed of at the feast. Great for kids.
Make a Prayer Flag
After banishing those grumps come beckon what you do want with a Beckoning & Blessing Prayer Flag. Cut an 8 x 11 rectangle out of any kind of green cloth you can find. Leaving two inches at the top, decorate your rectangle with blessings and beckonings. These could be wishes, pleas and visions for the community and for the planet as we move forward into a brighter future. Decorate with markers, paint, sewn objects, beads, bits of fabric – whatever strikes your creativity. Then, visit the Crossroads Fire Circle at the Four-Way Stop and hang your Beckoning & Blessing Prayer Flag on the line provided. Vinotok will fasten all of our Beckoning & Blessing Prayer Flags together to hang at the Phoenix at the top of Elk after the celebrations, rising from the flames of transformation, to call in balance, reciprocity and goodness for our community and the world. Great for kids.
Wanna help? Community volunteers may contact Anna Fenerty at 970-901-7122 or firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or to figure out your perfect spot.