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Michaelmas Festival: Bozeman

Epoch will hold our Michaelmas Fest Sept 29th at Cooper Park 5pm Michaelmas (pronounced Mi-kel-miss)originally began in Western Europe during the Middle Ages. It is a traditionally a day of feasting on goose and dragon bread to honor the archangel St. Michael, and is celebrated at September 29th this year, a quarter day when harvest comes to end and new planting cycles begin. Because Michaelmas falls near the equinox, it is commonly associated with the beginning of autumn. We will use this festival to teach our students the importance of using turning inward for courage and gather strength and fortitude to face the colder days and long nights of a Montana winter.

Michaelmas, or the "Festival of Courage", is the first festival of our school year. Our students will perform the play of St. George taming a fiery dragon with the help of the archangel, St. Michael, who gives him courage. Following the play there is a small harvest themed feast provided by the harvest of our family's gardens as well as our school garden. Our students will prepare items to share including Dragonbread-a Michaelmas favorite. The story of taming the dragon symbolizes the inner courage it takes to face our human challenges. As the days grow colder and the nights grow longer, we must find and bring forth our own inner light when the sun, warmth and growth of the earth are fading. “Michaelmas is a great time to ponder our own inner dragons and to cultivate the courage and strength necessary for self development.” – from Waldorf Publications newsletter

Waldorf festivals allow us to be attuned to the rhythm of Mother Earth and our community. Regardless of your religious affiliations, everyone can connect with the magic each new season brings. Our verse for courage: Brave and true will I be, Each good deed sets me free, Each kind word makes me strong. I will fight for the right! I will conquer the wrong! Sword of Michael brightly gleaming, Down to earth its light is streaming, May we see its shining rays In the Winter’s darkest days. Mealtime Blessing over feast: Earth who gives to us this food Sun who makes it ripe and good Sun above, Earth below Our loving thanks to you we show Michaelmas Songs: Visit this site for for 10 traditional Michaelmas songs. Michaelmas Community Activities:

Write something you seek courage for and post it somewhere you'll see it often. Share with friends and family and ask them to offer encouragement and support.

Courageous Activities: Try a hike you've been dreading or sign up for a class you've wanted to take.

End a toxic relationship or say "no" to that which does not serve you.

Make a meal you think is too difficult and master it.

Attempt a craft or project that seems daunting.

Seek courage as summer ends and we move into a short autumn followed by a lengthy, arctic winter! Be courageous as a friend, lover, parent, employee, or find courage alone for no-one but you!

NOTE: Epoch enrolled families and Epoch members are free to attend, but we ask that community members donate for a "ticket" to support our program goals and ability to continue offering community events and festivals.

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