"Children at the Life Dance" is the actual name of the Kids' Camp organized at the same time and place as the Life Dance.
The Life Dance is the main event, and it is a ceremony for the adults. The daily routines and the rhythm, the atmosphere, everything is paced by the preparatory activities, the Dance itself, and the dismantling of the ceremonial structures at the end. The Kids' Camp allows mothers and fathers to take part in the ceremony. Meanwhile, the children can enjoy being children in a very beautiful and protected setting.
If you wish to participate in the Life Dance as a father/mother, there are some specific conditions to be met. You can enter yourself as a Guardian, a Dancer, or a Singer and register your child or children at "Children at the Life Dance." Experienced people lead the Kids' Camp. Your child will be well cared for there and will also enrich our ceremony. Children have the chance to play, go swimming, do handcrafts and sing. They might look for water nymphs, or paint their own shield. Excursions are organized occasionally to local sights. The children can help with the construction of the Arbor if they wish. During the Dance, they will have the opportunity to dance to the Tree at specific times.
If you, your child/children or the minder are participating for the first time and you need more information, please contact Gertraud Oberpaul. Thank you.
There is a limited amount of space for camping, so your registration's date of receipt will be used for the allotment of places.
Children until the age of about 8 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or another care person. Responsibility for the child will be with the parent or minder. These adults are fully integrated into the "Children at the Life Dance." They will help make the Kids' Camp a success.
Children of about 8 to 12 years of age do not have to be accompanied by a parent at the "Children at the Life Dance." These children must be able to sleep alone and have a certain maturity. The child will accept the supervisors as the persons responsible. There will be opportunities to see the parents during the setting-up days, since we all eat together. The child will need his or her own camping equipment, so make sure it is in functioning order at home (no leaky tents, enough pegs, etc.).
Teenagers have three different ways to take part in the Dance. The three possibilities are like the three steps in a staircase:
Step 1: at the threshold of becoming a teenager
You are at the Kids' Camp "Children at the Life Dance" and you have the possibility of being at a different place each day during the build-up period. These places are the Arbor, the Water Sanctuary, the Sweatlodge Grounds, with the Ceremonial Team, the Singers, the Guardians. There are various tasks to manage at each of these areas and you may participate. You can decide the evening before where you wish to go the next day. You can discuss it with the head of the Kids' Camp, who will then check if it will be possible on the desired day. You will stay all day at the place you chose. In the evening you can give a brief feedback and then choose your place for the following day. You also have the possibility of occasionally spending a day in the Kids' Camp.
Step 2: becoming a teenager, you start taking on responsibilities.
You will go to work with the Guardians as a youth, not as a child. There is a rite of passage for becoming a young member of the Life Dancers. You will work with the Guardians and camp with the adults. That's why you will also move out of the Kids' Camp. For more information, or if you are really interested, or for a preliminary talk (mandatory): please contact Gertraud Oberpaul by the end of May.
Step 3: after passing from child to youth – you dance your own Dance.
As an initiated youth, you have the possibility of participating in the Dance as a Dancer or as a Guardian with the approval of your parents. In this case, the Life Dance will pay the Dance fees (if you are not 18 years of age). You may choose an experienced person who will serve as your stand-behind and support you for the 10 days of the Dance. For more information, or if you are really interested, and for a preliminary talk (mandatory), please contact Gertraud Oberpaul by the end of May.
An important note: life at the Kids' Camp is electronics-free. Please prepare your child for this particular kind of fasting. Thank you.
If you intend to participate, you will find all the necessary information here and everything else you will need to organize yourself.