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Nov 27th
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Butterfly Beach Bash

insectSANTA CRUZ > 26th Annual Migration Festival celebrates the journey of monarchs and other creatures

One of Santa Cruz’s most beloved winter residents—the monarch butterfly—is bidding farewell to its seaside home in search of greener pastures. Each year, from October to February, about 100,000 monarchs nestle in eucalyptus trees at Natural Bridges. By the first week of March, they have moved on to sources of milkweed, which serves as their food source and breeding ground during the spring and summer.

Each year, Natural Bridges State Beach celebrates the monarch’s journey with their annual Migration Festival. This year’s festival will be held this Saturday, Feb. 11 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The festival is used to draw attention to conservation efforts for a number of migratory animals, including gray whales, elephant seals, pelicans and the California newt, which makes a journey of less than a mile each year.

“The theme is to celebrate the migratory species that pass through Monterey Bay, as well as stress the importance of habitat protection,” says Chris Lynch, a representative for Natural Bridges. “Natural Bridges is both a sanctuary and a rest stop for a lot of these migratory species.”

Saturday’s festival will feature educational activities for children in attendance. More than 15 organizations will set up information booths and interactive activities. Representatives will be on hand to give presentations about different creatures, like bats and frogs. There will games, guided tours, arts and crafts projects, skits and plenty of other activity stations to keep the kids entertained.

For the adults in the crowd, a number of guest speakers will be present to speak about the animals and other conservation topics. The 5M’s Band (5M’s stands for Mostly Mediocre Music Monarch Mariposas) will also perform their peculiar brand of nature-inspired music, entertaining patrons with songs played to the tune of classic hits, but with a decidedly monarch-friendly twist.

Saturday’s event is free, but a day use parking pass is available for $10. Patrons can also purchase a picnic lunch at the festival, with proceeds benefitting education programs at the park. Of course, there will also be the traditional “habitat cake,” with complimentary slices available to anyone who needs to satisfy their sweet tooth.

For more information about the Migration Festival, visit parks.ca.gov or call 423-4609.

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Giving Thanks: The Thought-Form of Solution

We are in the time and under the influence of Sagittarius, sign of the wanderer, good food, good music, and the joy (Jupiter as ruler) that occurs from giving to others while simultaneously giving thanks from our hearts. Having the Thanksgiving holiday during the month of Sag is not a mistake. No other sign understands joy (an aspect of the Soul) as Sag (except Pisces when not in despair). “Sag is a beam of directed and focused light. The beam reveals a greater light ahead, illuminating the Way to the center of the Light,” emitting the Ray of Joyfulness. Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude; in the form of prayers, thoughts, feelings, wishes, hopes and greetings. Gratitude is something we still need to learn. Gratitude creates goodwill. Together, gratitude and goodwill create the “thought-form of solution” for humanity and our world’s problems. Gratitude and goodwill are the prerequisites for the reappearance of the Christ, the Aquarian World Teacher. In Ancient Wisdom texts it is written, “being grateful is the hallmark of one who is enlightened.” Gratitude comes from the Soul—the characteristics of which are love and wisdom (Ray 2). Gratitude is scientifically and occultly (mental, not emotional) a releasing agent. Gratitude liberates us and everything around us. Also a service to others, gratitude is deeply scientific in nature, releasing us from the past and laying open our future path leading to the new culture and civilization, the new laws and principles, the rising light of Aquarian, the Age of Friendship and Equality. The Hierarchy lays much emphasis upon gratitude. Let us be grateful this year and this season together. And so now the days of light illuminating the darkness begin (December’s festivals and feast days). Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. I am grateful for all of you, my readers.

 

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