Thankyou, and Happy Beltane!

The 34th annual Mount Franklin Pagan Gathering was a weekend of perfect weather and of friends old and new. In coming weeks we will do a proper run-down of the weekend, and in the meantime watch our gallery as we have already started to add photos from the weekend!

We just wanted to take this opportunity to say a huge, heartfelt thankyou to the many businesses, groups and individuals who supported the Gathering this year. Your generosity and enthusiasm have been truly inspiring, and was what made the Gathering possible!

Thankyou to the Sustainable Hepburn Association (SHARE) for your continued support with our insurance and other administrative particulars. You really went above and beyond this year to help us get the Gathering organised.Thanks also to Parks Victoria and to the Dja Dja Wurrung clans for supporting the Gathering and caring for the land on which we meet.

To Shaz, Drum, Ang and everybody at Silver Birch Grove: thank you so much for such a beautiful ritual and the gorgeous feast afterwards. You really did bring us all together for an inspiring experience! We wish Drum safe travels back to the US, and thank him for traveling all this way!

We’d also like to thank our many, MANY generous raffle prize donators: Stephen at Moore Designs, The Daylesford Cider Company, Silver Birch Grove, The Daylesford Chocolate Mill, The Daylesford Day Spa, Stacey at The Country Witch’s Cottage, Willow at Wytchway Designs, White Witch Wares, Erika T, Alannah Coughlan, Janna at the Candied Peacock, Truly at Made by Truly, Forrest, Sharon, BJ Gilson, Lee K, Joanne M and Karen K.
*** If you came over and donated prizes over the weekend, please let us know! We have missed a few names here!***

Huge love to Kylie M for once again being our official photographer. The photos have come out beautifully!

Gratitude also to the Australian Stage Play for your Mummers’ Play. It made a great start to the Friday evening festivities.

Thanks to Erika T for the wonderful logo she designed for our tshirts, and to Tex and Fi at Big Tree T-Shirts for printing them!

Big hugs and Beltane love to Drum, Linda, Seline and Ryan for your interesting and insightful workshops, and to Fiona of the Pagan Collective of Victoria for running the Children’s Maypole.Thanks to Mei for all the running around you did for raffle prizes in the lead-up to the event, and to Mark, Mark, Kylie, Mei, Alvin, Mandy, Tom, Dale, Kelly, Sue and Mick for all your help with those hundred little (and not so little) jobs throughout the weekend.

Finally, thanks to EVERYONE who attended the Gathering, took part in the ritual, bought raffle tickets/tshirts/pancakes/sausages, talked, laughed, worshipped or shared throughout the weekend. Because of you, the 34th MFPG was nothing short of brilliant, and we can’t wait for the 35th! 🙂

With love,
Linda, Michel, Mel, Des, Josie and Ryan
MFPG Organisers

Attendees of the 2015 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

Attendees of the 2015 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

What should I bring to Mount Franklin this year?

As the weekend nears, we’ve had lots of queries about what to bring to the MFPG and what to leave at home. Below is a list relevant to the 2015 Gathering.

Attendees of the 2015 Gathering should also familiarise themselves with the information on our Frequently Asked Questions, Camping at the Mount and Ritual Etiquette pages.

Please bring:

  • Food and water for the weekend. There is no potable water on the Mountain, so make sure you bring enough drinking/cooking/washing water for the entire weekend.
  • Toilet paper. Portaloos will be provided for MFPG campers, however you will need to BYO loo roll! Hand sanitiser is a good idea, too.
  • Firewood. Collecting firewood from the Mountain is forbidden by Parks Victoria. Please bring your own firewood, and perhaps a small donation of wood for the bardic circle fire.
  • Camping, cooking and eating gear. Caravans and camper vans with noisy generators are discouraged.
  • Weather appropriate clothing. The forecast for the weekend is currently in the mid twenties, however nights can still be very chilly in Central Victoria. This may mean warm socks/jumpers at night and hats, tshirts and sunscreen during the day!
  • Some string solar lights to help us light up the crater.
  • Accoustic instruments, stories or songs for our Friday night Bardic Circle (but please respect that we are a family friendly Gathering and cease drumming after 10pm!)
  • Your spare change for our raffle, sausage sizzle, pancakes and merch. The MFPG is a free gathering run by a non-profit organisation and the oldest neopagan gathering in the world. The proceeds of our fundraising all go to paying for essentials such as portaloos, permits, marquee hire and more.
  • Bags large enough to hold all your rubbish. There are no bins on the Mountain. The amount of rubbish we have to clean up at the end of each gathering is simply staggering, especially considering many attendees follow nature-based paths! Please take your rubbish with you when you leave!
  • A camping chair. For sitting on while you catch up with old friends and make new ones! 🙂

Please DO NOT bring:

  • Illicit substances. We have a zero tolerance policy towards illicit drugs (including drug dealing). If you are behaving in such a way that you are endangering the safety and quiet enjoyment of other participants or campers, you will be asked to leave immediately, and serial offenders will incur a lifetime ban from the Gathering. Please remember that we share the mountain with other campers, visitors and families.
    Alcohol is fine, but please remember that the MFPG is a family friendly event and drink responsibly! Anyone deemed intoxicated will not be permitted to participate in the ritual for Beltane on the Saturday night. No exceptions.
    If you do decide to drink, please designate a driver if you plan on staying off the Mount.
  • Ritual weapons of any kind, including spears, swords and athames. These are forbidden by Victorian Law.
  • Electronic instruments, amplifiers and noisemakers. These are not in the spirit of the weekend.

See you on the Mount! – Linda, Michel, Mel, Des, Josie and Ryan

Glockenspiel music by the fire, 2014. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

Glockenspiel music by the fire, 2014. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

Busy, busy…

It’s mid September!

Time has flown by, and we’ve all been super busy getting organised for this year’s event. We are still working our way through the documentation required from us by Parks Victoria, and should have it sorted soon. We have been overwhelmed and inspired by the number of emails, calls and messages we have received with offers of help.

While we are getting on top of the paperwork side of things, there are plenty of other ways people can lend a hand:

Marquee setup/packdown: The communal marquee goes up on Friday afternoon and comes down on Sunday. This year we are in need of a few people to assist in putting it together and taking it apart.

Workshops: Many thanks to those people who have already offered their time to run a workshop over the weekend! We still have some workshop times available for anybody who’s interested.

Raffle: We are still on the lookout for prizes for the raffle. Individuals and businesses who donate a prize are advertised as “Friends of Mount Franklin” on our website.

If you are able to assist with any of these or if you would like more information, please contact us at mountfranklinpagans@gmail.com

2015 Schedule

Friday, 23rd October
2pm-4pm: Organiser arrival/Setup. Marquee setup
4pm onwards: Attendee arrival
5pm: Welcome to country, official opening, introduction of special guest in the centre crater
6pm: Mummers’ play by The Australian Stage Co, followed by Bardic Circle in the centre crater
7pm: Dusk swap/barter market at the communal marquee

Saturday, 24th October
10am: Incense Workshop with Ryan in the centre crater
12:30pm: Sausage Sizzle at the Organisers’ camp
1pm: Workshop with Drum (Vice Arch Druid, ADF) in the centre crater
3pm: Hexencraft Workshop with Linda in the centre crater
4pm: Building the bonfire
Time TBC: Ritual Workshop/Rehearsal including Spiral Dance Workshop
Dusk: Beltane Ritual in the ritual space

Sunday, 25th October
10am: Workshops in the centre crater (TBC)
10am: Pancake breakfast at the Organisers’ camp (TBC)
11am: Maypole, followed by kids’ maypole in the centre crater
11:30am: Raffle draw
12pm: Moot, official close
12:30pm-3pm: Pack up, clean up, depart

At the 2014 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

At the 2014 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

2015 Workshops and Raffle

We are now taking expressions of interest from anyone wanting to run workshops at the 2015 Mount Franklin Pagan Gathering, which will be taking place from the 23rd to the 25th of October. 2015.

As they have been in previous years, workshops must be free for attendees and must not provide a hazard or risk to participants.

We are also seeking donations for this year’s raffle. Donations of local or handmade products or services would be extremely welcome! Mount Franklin is free for attendees, so we rely on the raffle to help us cover some of the unavoidable costs associated with running a gathering such as this. Individuals and businesses who donate to the MFPG are mentioned on our website, social media and on information pamphlets at the Gathering.

If you are able to help out with workshops or raffle prize donations, please contact us at mountfranklinpagans@gmail.com 🙂

With thanks,

MFPG Organisers

Hawthorn kindly donating his time to run a workshop at the 2014 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.

Hawthorn kindly donating his time to run a workshop at the 2014 Gathering. Photo courtesy of Kylie Moroney.