Skip to main content

Halloween and Michaelmas at Sierra Waldorf School - COME JOIN US!

The wondrous dragon is tamed.
Today was a significant day in the calendar at the Sierra Waldorf School in Jamestown - a truly outstanding progressive Waldorf/Steiner school dedicated to cultivating the individuality, spirituality and interconnectedness of each child.

It was Michaelmas, a day that has meaning in many cultures, and in Waldorf symbolizes the balance of light and darkness (it is very close to the Autumn Equinox, when day and night are of almost equal length), the conquering of fears and a new beginning, as represented by taming (and less frequently, slaying) a dragon.

The celebration took the form of an all-school performance on the lawn by Sierra Waldorf's old Rawhide School building (which itself dates back to 1875 and was originally a school house for pioneers), with a joyful collection of gnomes and meteors and St Michael, the dragon-tamer. The dragon itself was a wonderful creation with many legs and many happy children inside.

Although Michaelmas was originally a Christian festival, in Waldorf it is an inclusive celebration of spirit and inner strength that is not specifically religious in nature.

The Gnomes gather.
Likewise, the Halloween Festival, which will be coming up on Halloween itself - Monday, October 31, 2011 starting at 5:30pm, with a huge bonfire at 8pm - is a child-friendly celebration of the cycles of life and death, of the joyous light and darker instincts within us all, and of the balance we strive for between the differing forces in our nature that make us who we are.

It is open to everyone in the surrounding communities of Jamestown, Sonora, Columbia, Twain Harte, Angel's Camp, Tuolumne and beyond - and is a more playful, non-scary (frightening masks and costumes are not permitted) alternative to trick or treating. There will be healthy food and drinks, magical lights and colorful attractions everywhere, a warm welcome for all - and a suggested donation of $5 per family.

For more details of the Sierra Waldorf School, please visit its website: The school is situated at 19234 Rawhide Road, Jamestown, CA 95327, tel: 209-984-0454.


Popular posts from this blog

The High Tower Apartments and The Long Goodbye

Photograph by Dwayne Moser. This beautiful apartment complex in Los Angeles is called the Hightower or High Tower Complex (the High Tower name refers to the central elevator, I believe), and was designed in 1935-1936 by architect  Carl Kay - and made famous in 1973 by my favorite film, Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye (see Why I Love Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye ). Although Altman used the building as Philip Marlowe's apartment in his somewhat post-modern Long Goodbye (the film plays with references to Old Hollywood and opens and closes with the song, Hooray For Hollywood ), the building has another direct connection to Raymond Chandler. It was apparently the inspiration for Chandler in his book, The High Window (the first Chandler novel I ever read), in which Chandler describes the residence of Philip Marlowe as being on the cliffs above High Tower Drive in a building with a fancy elevator tower. (Thanks to the Society of Architectural Historians Southern

Andrew Hale and Sade

Sade in concert in San Jose. All concert photos  Copyright  © 2011  Alexander Chow-Stuart. On Thursday evening, we saw our longtime friend Andrew Hale perform with Sade at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, in one of the most beautifully conceived and produced concert performances I have ever seen. Sade is a rare musician, in that she and the band only write, record and tour every eight to ten years, so that in a very real sense you can measure your life by her. The band's music is always fresh and always newly conceived - for their previous album, Lovers Rock , they stripped everything down musically to a minimalist sound and banished the saxophone that had been so much a part of Sade's heavily soul- and jazz-influenced style. The latest album, Soldier of Love , released in 2010, is one of the most tender, moving collections of songs yet, from the astonishingly beautiful Morning Bird , which features exquisite keyboards from Andrew, to the soulful, retro, return-

A favorite place for peace and reflection

Lyons Lake dam a couple of days back. One of our family's favorite places. (Photo: Alexander Chow-Stuart)