All those in the SI Youth Program are invited to be a part of the SI Youth Choir starting up this year. Whether you have sung in a choir before or not, if you like to sing please join us. The workshop is led by Joe Schafer, who directs the SI Children’s Choir, as well as children’s and youth choirs at his church.
Socrates believed that all people had something to contribute to human thought and understanding. That’s why he took his philosophy “to the streets,” engaging those he met with his famous questions. In his book, Socrates Café, philosopher Christopher Phillips develops a technique to get the practice of philosophy out of the Ivory Tower and back into the public square. Using Phillips’ methods, we will generate A Big Question every afternoon, and tackle it through lively and open discussion. Anyone with a brain (or even half!) is welcome!
Jane Dirks is an anthropologist and long-time SI attendee and workshop presenter, who has facilitated many Socrates Cafés at Winter Institute over the years. She considers SI more of a vision quest than a vacation.
What participants should bring: A notebook, if you would like to record thoughts or comments, but nothing is required.
Sacred Song Circle
Want to avoid the early crush of people waiting in line for dinner? Come join us instead for 30 joyful minutes of spiritual and spirited singing in community with the Sacred Song Circle. This group meets from 5:00 till 5:30 PM every day and is open to everyone regardless of age, singing experience, or musical expertise. Sacred Songs are drawn from a variety of sources and are songs with a positive message or theme, such as love, community, peace, care for the Earth, etc. No need to sign up or bring music.
Saunis Parsons is a member of the UU Church of Kent, and has been singing since she could talk. She has been leading Sacred Song Circles for at least 5 years now, and enjoys bringing this spiritual practice to more and more people.
What participants should bring: Water to wet your whistle.
Mindfulness & Gentle Yoga
Mindfulness and gentle yoga welcomes the body, mind, and spirit to an expression of balance and peace, through asana (postures), mindfulness, breath, and relaxation. This practice is accessible to any level adult student, as following ahimsa (non-harming) is at the foundation of this style. Every student learns to listen to their body and understand the feeling sense of each pose, achieving union with a greater wellbeing that will expand beyond the mat into daily living.
Carol Posch Comstock, RYT, has a mystical approach to teaching yoga, informed by her many years as an art-for-meditation teacher & artist. She has an intuitive flair for connecting the natural seasons, chakra symbolism, and expressive arts into her teaching style.
What participants should bring: Yoga mat and thick cotton blanket.
For instrumentalists with some music reading experience (about middle school level, give or take). Folk orchestra will provide music for the adult vespers services during the week of SI, and possibly other performances as well. We try to “mix it up” for the benefit of the SI community and musicians by trying a variety of types of tunes: traditional folk, ethnic tunes, free form, jazz, and (not limited to) Beatles, to fit with the flow of the evening worship services. Music selection suggestions from participants are always appreciated and considered – and sometime used depending upon service themes and energy level of leader.
Pat Lorei is a not-yet retired human services worker (Program Specialist, 28 years), SI Folk Orchestra leader (circa 20 years) and musician in “wedding band” The Mar-Vels and acoustic band Bus 17, as well as helping with tunes at the UU Congregation of Erie (PA).
What participants should bring: Bring your musical instrument and a folding music stand if you have one. Pat will need to know if you have an instrument other than the usual C-Bb-Eb-bass clef notation, so he can write out the notation as needed.
Dungeons and Dragons
Kristy Bores and Reid Parsons
A workshop for children and adults, grades 8 and above. Use dice and pencils to simulate a fictional fantasy or sci-fi character in this shared-story-telling experience. Experienced players are strongly appreciated, as is anyone who likes to get involved! Most campaigns will run Pathfinder/D&D3.5E. Workshop is limited by the number of Dungeon Masters available to run campaigns. Two 6-8 player campaigns are guaranteed, other campaigns are dependent on participant volunteer.
Kristy Bores and Reid Parsons have been either attending or running the D&D workshop for almost as long as they’ve been attending SI. Both are experienced table-top dungeon-masters capable of running week-long campaigns for players of varying skill levels.
Taking Action on Climate Change
Bob Mitchell Becky Mitchell
The 2016 electorate rated climate change nearly last – 16 out of 18 — among national issues. In this workshop, we will explore why this is the case and what tangible actions we can all take to correct it. Each day we will discuss challenges such as: bringing up this “taboo” topic in the first place; thinking about climate change at a personal level; dealing with dismissive arguments; and avoiding the pitfall of “perfect” solutions that undermine good ones. Please join us to discuss these issues, raise the challenges that you see and — above all — to offer solutions.
Bob and Becky (father and daughter) have been attending SI since 1998. Bob is happily retired and holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering and a MS in Physics from Carnegie Mellon University and a BS in Physics from University of Pittsburgh. Becky (former SI Young Adult Chair) works as an engineer in a manufacturing facility and holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University.
Theme Talk Back