Casey Giovinco is the Chief Elder of Gala Witchcraft, a coven-based, initiatory tradition of Witchcraft for Gay and Bisexual men. In his professional life, Casey helps people integrate spiritual, mental, and physical health as a RYT 200 yoga teacher, a certified consulting hypnotist, and a philosophical consultant. As a philosophical consultant, Casey helps witches and non-witches alike to achieve lasting success in their lives. By combining the skills that he developed as an academic philosopher with the wisdom of the Western Mystery Traditions, Casey provides a unique approach to problem solving that helps modern Pagan people to achieve lasting success in their lives.
Christine Laplante, LMHC has been teaching, writing and working with individual and groups for almost two decades around the topics of sex, relationships, stress-reduction and mind/body integration from a humanistic and trauma-informed perspective. She recently published her book: Sacred, Not Secret: An Integrated Approach to Sexual (R)Evolution and has a few more writing projects in the works. She has a degree in Counseling as well as Music Therapy and often utilizes Music Medicine in her work.
About Sacred, Not Secret: An Integrated Approach to Sexual (R)Evolution
No amount of talking about sex is going to diminish the mystery of the experience of it. In Sacred, Not Secret, Christine delves into two systems of human development: Eastern (Chakra) and Western (psychological/developmental) theories. Discussing the non-linear, and cyclical, nature of development, as well as our potential systematic traumas during those phases, this book provides exercises and stories that open a dialogue to exploring our sexual, sensual, emotional and energetic health. Written from an authentic, integrated and human perspective this book is easy to read, yet encourages you to dive deeply into your own perceptions about sexual and developmental health.
Eve, one of the Usual Suspects, has been making pretty objects with gemstone beads, string, and wire for a couple of decades or so.
I am a Professional drummer who has been on this Spiritual Path for over 25 years, traveling internationally to learn the philosophy of Rhythm from many cultures. I believe that Rhythm, Cycles, and Patterns are the foundation of our life. I have been a Rhythm maker, guide, and teacher at events such as Dark Odyssey, Fet Fest, THE Beltane, Fires of Venus, Pennsic, Sirius Rising, Starwood, Playa Del Fuego, PEX Fest, and the MD and NY Faeire Fests (to name a few). As a long time member of the Primal Arts Tribe, I have helped facilitate Ritual events and assisted many people in the direction of Spiritual awakeness over the years.
Firesong (Eshu Akoni) is a priestess and Pathway initiate at the Universal Temple of Spirits, a Global Spirits pantheistic trance possession temple. Called the “human iPod”, she is a versatile classically trained soprano, as well as a professional teacher, artist, herbalist, and experienced gardener.
Firesong conducts The Voices of the Seasons Ensemble, Global Spirits services, and is cast in several opera and recital productions. She recorded several teaching CDs of traditional chants and is the author of Global Spirits: Philosophies and Practices.
Giani Siri does Conflict Resolution for a living. She is a mediator in the Delaware Family Court system and has taught Conflict Resolution skills in prison, schools, and community groups for over 20 years.
Gwaeron/Craig Setti- Pourer
Grandmother Elspeth has been conducting workshops on spiritual growth and enrichment since 1991. Ordained by Pete Pathfinder, founder of the http://www.aquariantabernaclechurch.org/, and certified as a Shamanic Practitioner by The Church of Earth Healing, Elspeth is opinionated and outspoken, She is a great-grandmother, environmentalist, healer, teacher, pastoral counselor, and irrepressible storyteller. As an honored elder in the Neo-Pagan movement, she is a living example of the timeless truths that she teaches. She has published a book, “Gylantra’s Journey”. two spoken word CDs,” Out of the Forest” (a series of Trance Journeys.) and “Gylantra’s Legacy”,(an audio book). She is an experienced Tarot Consultant and Counselor.
She has been part of FSG since the very first one, missing only a few years.
Helen Barbara Pattskyn came to neo-Paganism in 1989 and has been an active member of the SE Michigan Pagan community ever since. Having attended FSG for the past couple of years, she is excited to be in teaching here this year. In addition to being a Shamanic practitioner, rune-worker, and a witch, she is also an artist, an author, a wife and a mom. Her email address is email@example.com
Hillary Laughing Coyote is what happens when a young Jersey girl moves to the Southwest desert with a wide-open head full of trickster potential. They are a combination of spiritual guide, teacher, and pot-stirrer, which together add up to shamanic practitioner. They have been speaking about spooky spirit matter to groups of interested people since 2008 and facilitating shamanic healing since 2012.
Bio: Hugh has been a Pagan for more than thirty years; he was at the very first Free Spirit Gathering and has attended almost every one since. He is an eclectic Polytheist and member of the Universal Temple of Spirits, a celebratory and devotional group working in the Global Spirits trance-possessory tradition. He has been awarded a Certificate of Continuing Education (with a concentration in Text, Tradition and Interpretation) from Cherry Hill Seminary. He writes poetry, reviews books for Witches and Pagans magazine, and reads a lot. A book of his poetry- “The Words Swim, Waiting”- is available on Lulu.com. His blog can be found at http://thewordsswimwaiting.wordpress.com.
Things! On Fire! To Music! Hvbris is a performance troupe borne of the community at Free Spirit Gathering. Entertainers and instructors, we are an assorted band of fire freaks seeking to amuse with our wickedly creative antics. Based on the East Coast, and performing from Massachusetts to DC, we are bringing our questionable expertise to FSG once again. Why? To help you (yes, you) learn the art of poi spinning.
Jaqui Mac- Jacqui MacMillian
Jaqui MacMillan found her passion for African drumming thirty years ago. Over a span of fifteen years, she studied privately with many African drum masters, including Babatunde Olatunji, Mamady Keita and at the Tam Tam Mandingue School in Washington, DC. She began sharing her joy of drumming with others by performing, teaching classes and facilitating community drum circles. Since 1993, Jaqui has taught thousands of students across the USA, both privately and through her Drum for Joy! workshops. Over the years, Jaqui has performed and recorded with some of the top names in the business and has an extensive discography, and WAMA awarded her the “World Music Instrumentalist Award” every year from 1995 through 2002. In 2006, Jaqui moved from Washington, DC to Westminster, MD where she created Magnolia House Arts, Crafts, & Music Studios. She currently teaches and is the director of The Drum For Joy! Orchestra.
Joshua is a massage therapist, a Shiatsu practitioner, a yoga instructor, and in service to Raven Kaldera.
Kat: Eclectic witch of 30+ years, currently studying Shamanism. Studied meditation techniques under a Zen Buddhist monk among others. Currently exploring semi retirement and ways to work the Craft into various kinds of needlecrafts.
I have been an intuitive energy worker my whole life, but started formal training in 2009 by learning Reiki I and psychic healing from FSG workshops. I am presently certified in Reiki III, and also have training in shamanic journey work and soul retrieval. I’ve spent the past several years practicing, refining, and honing my techniques, and feel guided to share what I’ve learned with the community.
Still just me…. Witch, Geek, Freak, Reiki Master Teacher, Priestess, Minister, Counselor, Coach, Healer, Author, Cook, Performer, Dreamer, Builder, Druid’s Wife, Cat Mommy, Detroit and Jersey, Music and Mayhem, Above and Below. Blessed Be.
Mark the Druid
Mark the Druid has been a practicing pagan since 1996, with a background in Celtic, Wicca and Norse traditions. He has also been a member of the Order of Bards, Ovates, & Druids since 2004. His professional background is in the Geosciences at New Jersey City University. He is also president of North Jersey Astronomical Group conducting public astronomy outreach, and also contributes his work to David Levy’s Sharing the Sky Foundation.
Pendragon is a long time SCA member, chainmail maker, and jack of all trades, master of many. He has served the FSG community for the last few years as resident MacGyver.
Raven Kaldera is a shaman, diviner, homesteader, transgender activist, prolific pagan author, and founder of the First Kingdom Church of Asphodel. His works include Dark Moon Rising: Pagan BDSM and the Ordeal Path; Hermaphrodeities: The Transgender Spirituality Workbook; MythAstrology; The Ethical Psychic Vampire; Pagan Polyamory; and the Northern-Tradition Shamanism Series, to name just a few. He lives and works on an organic pagan farm in Hubbardston, Mass., and can be found online at www.cauldronfarm.com and www.paganbdsm.com.
Scott Mohnkern, author of A Year of Viking Ritual and Hanging From the Tree: Living With the Runes has been a practicing heathen for over 20 years, and has been teaching for over 15. Scott loves to help people understand the heathen gods, and heathen philosophy. He has been teaching classes at Free Spirit Gathering for over a decade.
He is currently working on his new book Ancient Values For a Modern Age as well as working closely with the Mid-Atlantic Spae team. If you don’t find him socializing in front of his cabin, check merchants row, where he offers readings, and sells books.
Sue Wolfsong & Jonny Lee (Wolfsong & Jonny)
Sue, HPs of Portal of the Porcupine has been involved with the pagan world for over 20 years & has presented musical and sensuality workshops at FSG and other pagan festivals. Working as an eclectic musical duo with Jon as ‘Wolfsong & Jonny’, both she & Jon have had many previous musical ‘incarnations’ before coming together romantically and musically in 2008. You may have seen/heard our lunchtime concerts at FSG in recent years. We’re available for parties, weddings and bar mitzvahs in your home town!
Sundance Metelsky is an existential shamanic mystic who has been walking the shamanic path since 1992. She has studied with Rena Yount, Tom Cowan, Nan Moss, David Corbin, Dana Robinson, Adam Davis, Mary Tyrtle Rooker, and with many helping spirits, seen and unseen. She is a member of the Universal Temple of Spirits (trance possession), the Sacred Women’s Circle (eclectic), and the Jungian Society of Washington. Her interests include dream and art explorations, deep diving in the psyche, shamanic work with the Spirits of the Land and Weather, and Celtic shamanism.
Thorn Mooney is a Gardnerian priestess and covenleader operating in Charlotte, NC, and the author of Traditional Wicca: A Seeker’s Guide. She holds a graduate degree in religious studies, practices Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA), and works as a public high school teacher. Read her additional work in Witches&Pagans Magazine and on Patheos Pagan. Visit her online at http://www.thornthewitch.com.
Tom Swiss describes his spiritual path as “Zen Pagan Taoist Atheist Discordian”, which usually baffles questioners enough to leave him alone. He is the author of _Why Buddha Touched the Earth_ (Megalithica Books, 2013) and blogs as “The Zen Pagan” for the Patheos Pagan Channel. He has previously served as President of the Free Spirit Alliance.
Since the turn of the century Tom has built a reputation as a lecturer on subjects spanning the gamut from acupressure to Zen and from self-defense to sexuality, drawing on his training and experience as an NCCAOM Diplomate in Asian Bodywork Therapy, a godan (fifth-degree black belt) in karate, a poet, a singer/songwriter, an amateur philosopher and spiritual explorer, and a professional computer geek.
Find out more about his wacky adventures at www.infamous.net.
Tyrtle’s cosmology is North European shamanism. Answering the call to healing and wholeness, manifesting non-dualistic realities, and transcending gender roles are central to Tyrtle’s vision. Her spiritual beliefs inform her political activism, which dates from the 1970s and includes a range of freedom, justice, and ecology movements. She calls her sweats “Stone Baths” in honor of her Anglo-Saxon/Germanic heritage. She worked sweats full-time within the Pagan community from 1995-2010 and has poured since 1996. A graduate of lengthy teacher trainings from Sandra Ingerman and Betsy Bergstrom, she is authorized by them to teach. She has engaged shamanism since the early 1990s and has a shamanic healing and teaching practice in the D.C. area. Her Shamanic Healers’ School opened in 2007 and continues to offer training for healers, journeyers, and everyday life. See <http://www.shamanicspring.com/>
The Universal Temple of Spirits
The Universal Temple of Spirits is a celebratory group practicing in the Global Spirits tradition. It is a possession-based working. The celebrations welcome all Spirits from around the Globe in friendship. Rituals are theme-based rather than pantheon-based and incorporate what we have in common as humans: shared food, dance, song, drumming, art, and possession trance. Global Spirits is a harm-none tradition.
Artisans & Purveyors of unique, high-quality essentials for working magic, the men from WizardsTower have been serving the Pagan Community for over 12 years. Jim & Kevin share what they have learned bringing their products to the community. They are designing 3 workshops based on what their research taught them about…..wood, color, and stones.