Serenity Gathering was held in Northern San Diego County, nestled in the hills of the La Jolla Indian Reservation. Wild sage and rosemary decorated the landscape, and festival goers camped along a gentle river that ran over shaded boulders. Camping was scattered along a path following the water for quite a long way down a one way path, this created sort of a stagnant flow in the festivals alignment and environment. The main stage was positioned at the beginning of all the vendors and the path continued to the back of the festival grounds to the back stage called the ‘New Moon Stage’. The sound was amazing and the stage created a fun and vibrant energy even though it was a mission to walk to. This kept many from wanting to make the voyage, but the mystical oak trees and babbling brook definitely made the hike worthwhile.
The beautiful festival grounds have been gathered on for centuries by the Luiseno Indians and in more recent years by Southern California’s moontribe parties, celebrating the flight of the moon. Humans have been gathering and celebrating forever, and I can feel the primordial spirit present in my motion as I dance among festival family. The familiar faces and energies I meet for the first time at these gatherings remind me that celebration is an essential part of the human experience, if not our primary function. Serenity further utilized this gathering space to serve another primal action of paying tribute to astrological energies and the changing of the seasons. March 20th welcomed the Spring Equinox with a total solar eclipse and the new moon in Pisces. An eclipse portal has opened and will remain open until April 4th, when it closes with a total lunar eclipse, and the full moon in Libra. This symbolizes a completion on a grand scale, all the hard work we have been toiling with the past year or so is beginning to present the fruits of our labor. This next moon cycle will provide us with bright beginnings attached to the finalization of major life themes and patterns.
On Thursday, entering into the festival was a bit chaotic, as this second year festival was definitely lacking in organization. However, by Friday night, Pumpkin’s set locked this energy into a more fluid Pisces flow, and the main stage maintained its vitality until sunrise. Saturday’s lineup was packed solid with amazing artists. The highlights of the evening included Desert Dwellers into Kalya Scintilla, followed by Thriftworks into Andreilen. The visuals and dancers matched the high intensity of the music magic, creating a free flowing multi-dimensional experience. The numbers at this festival allowed for adequate space to move and connect while feeling engaged. Mumukshu didn’t show up to play in the morning, so Morpheus from Las Vegas took his slot and killed it! He came with so much consistent energy, in a surprising and delightful set to greet the new day. SIXIS finished the morning sets with his beautiful psychedelic sound that keep everyone wanting more.Sunday cleared out many of the participants, and many of the artists didn’t show, which left up some void sound space in the start of the evening. PEGA5U5 and Freddy Todd wrapped up the festival on a high note, and the gathering made a gradual descent from then on.
The crowd of magic makers that filled the valley consciously left the space and the areas were cleaned up in an decent manner. I consistently saw people picking up trash throughout the whole weekend. All in all, the gathering was beautiful, intentional, and magical; and I look forward to watching this festival grow and evolve. The music lineup, vendors and space were top notch, and I wish to see them continue on this path with forward momentum. I thank them for welcoming springtime and our new moon cycle. May the Eclipse portal bring you new rhythms and space for positive creative expansion in the direction of your dreams.