Sunday, April 30, 2017

Halfway to Halloween + Happy Walpurgisnacht!

Happy April 30th, which not only marks Walpurgisnacht (aka Witches' Night aka Hexennacht) where the veil is thin and witches can be seen flying through the skies to their sabbats, but also marks the halfway point to Halloween - only six months to go until the best holiday!

If you haven't read any of my previous posts on Walpurgis, it is a holiday that was, and still is, celebrated in Germany where tales tell of witches taking to the skies on the way to the region's tallest peak, Brocken, to gather in dark celebration. In honor of these legends, people light bonfires to drive away evil spirits and welcome the arrival of spring with dancing, feasting and frolicking (very much like the pagan Beltane festival tomorrow, on May 1st). If you are interested in learning more about Witches' Night, I wrote more about it last year.

Illustration from Patrica Coomb's Dorrie witch books

I love Walpurgisnacht since it allows us to have some spookiness in springtime, but also because it marks the halfway point to Halloween! You all know I'm batty for Halloween, and I love having Walpurgis as a shining, jack-o-lantern beacon to signal there are only six months to go until All Hallow's Eve. I also find it fitting that Walpurgis recognizes witches, an icon of the Halloween holiday. If you want to get witchy today, I put together a list of 20 of my favorite witch films you should watch today!

Illustration from Adrienne Adams' A Woggle of Witches

Back when I used to throw Halloween parties, this was the point in the year where I would really crack down and pick a theme and start planning a costume (if I hadn't picked one out already). I don't throw parties anymore, but I do love having Walpurgis as the perfect indicator that there are only six months to go! I like to take this time to seek out Halloween inspiration and make it feel like autumn in my house (especially since it is starting to get hot around here). If you want suggestions on how to celebrate, I put together a list of 13 ways you can celebrate halfway to Halloween HERE!

Also, if you live in Southern California, don't forget about the Night of the Witches event at Phantom Carriage Brewery in Carson, California. There will be beer, food, talks from a mortician and talks on the holiday itself, plus a special screening of The Love Witch and a raffle! The event is FREE and donations will go towards Planned Parenthood and Death and The Maiden! Read more about the event HERE!

If you need more to get in the spirit of Walpurgis and Halloween, just watch this video of witches dancing at a celebration last year:

What are you doing to celebrate Halfway to Halloween and Walpurgisnacht?

Until next time, stay spooky!

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