Saturday, 28 January 2017

2016 Year in Review

While the world reeled from the tragedies of 2016, Chinook Hills Grove persistently moved forward in the presence and power of the land, under our wide arching sky. We celebrated, grew and lived in each moment of the year.

At least six members were present at each of the eight festivals, with our largest gathering of sixteen at Alban Arthan, including three children. Our rituals were held in homes, yards, public parks and a retreat centre west of Calgary.

Though the celebration of the turning wheel is central to our Grove activities, it isn't the only activity in which our members participate. Highlights of 2016 include:

  • A new member was Grove initiated into the Bardic grade and into the Order
  • One completed the Bardic grade and was Grove initiated into the Ovate grade
  • One completed the Druid grade and thus all three levels of the OBOD training programme
  • Another participated in the Funeral and Life Celebrancy courses offered by OBOD
  • Two members travelled to Ireland for the annual OBOD retreat
  • Four members camped and enjoyed the South Country Fair 
  • One facilitates circle dances, Full and New Moon rituals 
  • An OBOD member from the UK joined us for ceremony at Beltane
  • Table at Pagan Pride, with one member on the committee
  • Mailbox setup at CommunityWise

Additionally, our community has grown throughout the year. Our total membership is now at 27, with ten also being members of the Order.

Our monthly Druid Walks, first begun in 2015, let's us experience the beauty and peace of nature even inside the city. We continued this practice throughout 2016 with only December's walk being cancelled due to extremely cold conditions. Calgary has over 10,000 hectares of urban park area, which means we will be exploring new locations for months to come! A full list of the 2017 walks are here. Please email us if you're interested in attending.

And now Imbolc approaches with the first stirrings of spring. May 2017 bring joy, fruitfulness and success for all who breathe light and life into Chinook Hills Grove. /|\

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Imbolc Festival - Jan 29th 2017

The Wheel of the Year continues to turn,  with Imbolc,  the next festival approaching.

Our Group will meet at Bowmont Park on January 29th to Celebrate the season.    

Meet at 10:30 am  in the parking lot at 85 St. N.W. & 48 Ave. N.W.   Be sure to dress for the weather,  as we will be outside for about an hour.   Also, it might be a really good idea to bring those little grippy strap on things for your boots in case the path is icy.

If you are interested in attending,  please  RSVP  to        More information will be available closer to January 29th.

Some Imbolc information you may like to read:

Snowy Winter Blessings to all

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Druid Walk cancelled today, Jan 1, 2017

Happy New Year everyone!
All this beautiful fluffy white snow is making traffic headaches...  
Today's walk is cancelled.
How about going for a walk in your own neighbourhood and sharing some beautiful snow photos?

Snowy blessings to all!

Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Druid Walk, January 1st, Riley Park

Our next Druid Walk is coming quickly, on January 1st at 11:00am.   We will meet at the  Second Cup across from the Kensington Safeway.   (338 - 10 Street NW)

We will walk through Riley Park and the Senator Patrick Burns Rock Garden.

Happy New Year!

Peace Bridge Druid Walk

Our Druid Walk along and across the Bow River, downtown Calgary on Nov 13th was a bright and sunny day.   As you can see from the pictures, the sky was blue and river  quickly flowing.   Our group met and crossed the first bridge into Prince's Island Park, from the North.

An oak leaf on the bridge was a sign of good things to come.
The park is home to many Canadian Geese.

This little red squirrel was watching us walk past.

Here a gull tests the ice ... not quite thick enough for human skaters...

We often see red squirrels, grey and even black squirrels in Calgary,  but this is the first black one with a red tail.

At the west end of the park, we crossed the river on the beautiful Peace Bridge. 

Even broken glass is pretty in the sunshine...

It is an interesting spot to take photos from.  Depending on just which angle you face, you can have a city picture, or nature shot.  Somehow the city can hide behind the willows and poplars.

Back on the north side of the river, we walked down to 10th Street and Kensington and a stop in the Oolong Tea House.  Tea, cookies and good conversation always seem to be a favoured part of the Druid Walk.

This is a little grove of Oak Trees between Memorial Drive and the Bow River.  A spot to be revisited.

As always, a lovely walk with friends, and reminder to have a look around,  nature is everywhere, even downtown in the city.

Winter Blessings,

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Bow River Pathway Bridges Druid Walk

Our next walk will be November 27th, along the Bow River.  We will meet at 10:30 am at the Calgary Curling Club parking lot along Memorial Drive.  The address is 720 3rd Street NW.     We will then walk west along the Bow River to the Peace Bridge, and if the weather is nice,  farther to the next Bridge towards Kensinton.
We will  cross the river and walk East through Prince's Island Park, and grab a coffee at Eau Claire Market before heading back across the river to the curling club.

It sounds more complicated than it is.  

See you there!

Confluence Park and Birth Place Forest

We had a wonderful walk with new friends amongst the 6000 trees planted here at Confluence Park in 2007.   It is a shame that the planting of Birth Place forests did not continue after 2009.  These little trees have done well, and grown significantly since the last time I walked here, a year ago.

There was frost on the ground, but the sun was shining and quickly melting all signs of the cold weather.  It was a day to be wrapped up in warm wooly clothes, but after a few minutes of walking, we were warm enough.

It looked like the grasses and wild flowers had grown very tall over the summer,  making this a sort of 'wild space', although a relatively new park.  The forest is on a formerly bare hill top, overlooking Nose Creek.  The trees are becoming a wonderful wind break.

Piles of sandstone rocks add visual interest, and if you use your imagination a bit, can remind one of Standing Stones.

The trees are planted around the outside of the space,  leaving a long narrow meadow in between.   This is a very quite space, even though it is so close to the busy Beddington Trail roadway.   It was quite amazing how as soon as we left the little forest,  the sound of traffic bombarded us in the parking lot.

Most of the leaves had already fallen, but here and there where a few still hanging on.     The fox tail was very pretty, with its purple, green and gold colours in the sun.

Looking to the North, we could see the walking trails along Nose Creek Parkway, and across to the community of Harvest Hills.

Over this last little hill is the parking lot,  and back to the noise and bustle of the city.
In fact, after our walk, we drove off to Starbucks to continue the visit over hot drinks.

Blessings to all,