It might look and feel like summer outside, the official date is actually June 21 but Royal Oak Burial Park is inviting the public to celebrate a little earlier.
Welcome the summer with the 10th annual Summer So(u)lstice on June 15 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for an afternoon of music, poetry, history and a stroll along side departed friends and family.
The official kick-off ceremony starts at 1:30 p.m., near the fountain, where anniversary cake will be served as well as tea, coffee and other refreshments.
After the kick-off, the public is invited to take a walk to the Little Spirits Garden to see the newly installed appreciation boulders, one to recognize donors who have contributed in excess of $5,000 and the second is to recognize all the volunteers that assist with the Little Spirits Garden.
This year, ROBP Board Chair, Dick Tuckey and his wife Sally, will be recognized, the couple has donated over $10,000 to the Little Spirits Garden in honour and remembrance of their stillborn child, Sarah and in celebration of the many blessings they’ve received.
The Summer So(u)lstice is known for including Victoria’s renowned acapella women’s choral group, Ensemble Laude, scheduled to sing in the mausoleum and in the Little Spirits Garden throughout the afternoon. Local composer Brooke Maxwell has gathered local musicians to create The Sweet Chariot Band – cellist Byony Huylme, clarinetist Erin Onyschtschuk and Anna Bertuzzi on Oboe of which can also be enjoyed in the landscape and for scheduled appearances in the Mausoleum.
The public can have a personal poem composed by resident poets, this year including Carla Funk, Wendy Morton and Cynthia Woodman whose random acts of poetry inspired this unique tradition.
Visitors can create unique floral tributes, messages, parchment memory flags and Burial Park staff will be on hand to help visitors locate sites of ancestors.
Other highlights include a vintage car display to celebrate all Dads on Father’s Day weekend, historical talks with local historian John Adams.
Visitors are welcome to tour the Burial Park and see feature locations like the Woodlands Green Burial area, the Mausoleum, the Little Spirits Garden, Section T, Phase III and ROBP’s newest addition, bee hives. But bee careful, visitors must respect the Park’s bee friends and stay a good distance from the hives.
Summer So(u)listice is free, suitable for all ages, and wheelchair accessible. An event map with performance schedule is posted on: www.robp.ca
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