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Israeli Primitive Skills Gathering

Event date: 
Tuesday, 21 March, 2017 to Saturday, 25 March, 2017
Organised by: 
Avnei Derech
Kind of Event: 
for Professionals

General information
Thank you for choosing to take part in “Avnei-Derech” - a primitive skills gathering. We are grateful and excited to do this for the third time. It is amazing how many great people are involved in it - each one contributes in their own way with thier own gifts. There are no words to express our gratitude and awe. We are looking forward for sharing skills, crafts and stories around the fire.
There are some things you should know before hitting the road - sit comfortably, grab a cup of tea and read it through:

“Avnei derech” is a 5 days event, March 15-19 2016 (Tus-Sat). The full schedule will be posted on the gathering's first day.

Who is the event for?
E V E R Y O N E, and by that we mean EVERYONE.
We strongly believe in the tribe way of life - where there is a place for people of all ages and types.
We welcome grandparents, babies, kids, teens and people in their service years.
"Avnei Derech" is suitable for beginners and advanced alike, we are all teachers and all students. There will be workshops for all levels.
We also encourage Participants who are not teachers to teach a something which is a significant part of their lives.
Welcome!

What to bring?
Full personal camping gear - rain proof tent, sleeping bag, mattress etc.
Clothing for both heat and cold - nights can be very cold and days can be very hot.
Lunch (breakfast and dinner will be served and are included in the price).
Personal dishes - plate, cup, utensils (reusable).
A sharp knife to carve (optional but very useful).
Personal first aid kit.
Cash for the purchase of raw materials at the workshops (cost depending on the effort devoted to collecting).
A folding chair or something to sit on if you are uncomfortable sitting on the ground (which can be wet in the morning).
Trash bag - there will be no trash cans, each participant takes responsibility for personal waste.
Whatever makes you feel comfortable outdoors.
Musical instruments: guitars, drums, flutes - we are hoping for lots of music!
Hand-made or unique objects you would like to use as an exchange currency in the exchange blanket game.
Things you have made and want to exchange or sell in the market.
Items you would like to contribute to the raffle - collecting funds for primitive skills research (Coal extenders project)

The distance from the parking to camping area is a few hundred meters, so pack smart.
There are rooms for rent for participants who do not want to camp at "Cramim guest house" (about 25 min. drive)
+972-8-6597111

What not to bring:
Valuables - around the farm there is always movement of people: shepherds, cyclists, SUV, wild edible gatherers etc.
It will be at your favore to not bring equipment you need to worry about.
Dogs, alcohol and drugs.
Electronics that make sounds, beeps or bright lights.
Please use your phone in a scouty way.

Workshops
Our teachers are coming from all around the country to share their knowledge and skills.
Some teachers ask a fee for the raw materials they provide.
The list of teachers is not final and is subject to changes.

The first day of the gathering (Tuesday) is dedicated to settling in and orientation: Opening circle, a tour of the farm and the teachers market where each teacher will present their workshops. You are welcome to arrive on Tuesday starting at 11:00.
On Wednesday the workshops will begin, after a morning circle. Participants arriving on Wednesday morning will have to go through a brief event and space orientation before they can join the workshops, We really recommend arriving on Tuesday, giving yourself time to brush off the road dust and sink in.
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday there will be approximately 8 workshops hours per day (few workshops in the same time), from 9:00 to 17:00.

It can be confusing to choose a workshop. it is important to remember that there is no need to "catch" anything, there are plenty of wonderful new things to learn and great people to learn from. Take a deep breath and just feel where or what are you drawn to.
Remember there will be "Avnei-Derech" next year too, and the teachers hold workshops all year long.
In some workshops the number of participants will be limited by the teacher (enrollment at the event).
Depending on the nature of the workshop and the teacher's decision some of the workshops will take a whole day, some will take several hours and some will be open workshops where you can join or leave at any moment.
Every day, after breakfast each teacher will announce what he or she is going to teach that day, at what time and where. The detailed schedule will be published at the event itself.

Meals
Breakfast and dinner are included in registration fee.
Breakfast will be served every morning between 7:00 to 8:00. Dinner will be served at 18:00. The first meal will be served on Tuesday night, and the last meal on Saturday afternoon.
Through the day the schedule will be very dynamic with several workshops going on at the same time any given moment. Therefore there will be no communal lunch and participants must take care of themselves.
Meals will be simple, nutritious, and vegetarian. We will do our best to provide hot water for tea / coffee throughout the day. If you are sensitive to specific food or have other food preferences we ask that you take care of what you need. We can not meet every request or specific food or a way of cooking. We will prepare delicious, healthy and filling meals.

"Yatir" farm
"Avnei-Derech" is held in a beautiful valley surrounded by soft hills, in the vicinity of "Yatir" farm. In the farm are two families that have chosen to live an independent life, nine offspring, 2-6 volunteers, chickens, horses, a vegetable garden, herbs and more.
We ask to respect the privacy of the residents any possible way and not to go up to the farm at all, except on an organized tour, and certainly not to enter the fenced areas or the buildings.
The camping area is up the valley and at a reasonable distance from the main fire (consider impact). There are composting toilets so we can leave the farm a gift that within a few months will become compost to nourish the olive grove.
Our intention is to minimize the use of vehicles during the gathering. Parking will be just a few hundred meters from the tents; vehicles will not be allowed in during the gathering so pack wisely. It is highly recommended to arrive with everything you need, including food for lunch, so you will not have to travel back and forth during the gathering.
Wireless coverage in area is limited.
May we relate to the land that hosts us in a respectful way and leave it as good as we found it, and perhaps even better, as we relate to our homes.

Personal responsibility
Avnei-Derech's intention is to encourage simple living and self-productivity. We ask that you come with this intention in your hearts and take responsibility for your actions.
Study of skills & crafts includes exposure to risks that we are not necessarily accustomed to like working with a knife, flintknapping, fire making and more. Please take note of what you do and pay attention to other people's actions during the gathering. We encourage personal responsibility. Our intention is not only to share skills & crafts but also to create a community where mutual respect and interpersonal communication are essential.
"Avnei-Derech" is for all of us and all of us take part in it. Serving food and cleaning will be done by 8-6 volunteer participants after every meal.
May we leave behind our opinions, judgments and the stereotypes that surrounds us and enjoy connecting as respectful people.

Kids
"Avnei-Derech" welcomes families with children of different ages. kid's activities will run every morning Wednesday to Saturday. Activities include all kinds of fun things like a trip up the valley, creating with natural materials, going to the workshops and seeing what the big people are doing, games, mischief and more ....
Older children or teens can join workshops with parents. Please communicate with the teacher about kids participation.
We encourage participants to teach, create and play with next generation in any way you choose, this is a lovely way to share the responsibility and fun, and gain mutual growth.

Weather
The weather in mid-March can be interesting and varied. It is likely to have warm days and cold nights. Please come prepared: sun hat, long and airy clothes and sunscreen for the days, warm clothes for the night: a stocking cap, scarf, socks, good long underwear, etc. In the evenings there will be a central fire and one or two smaller fires. We are prepared for a drizzle, but In the case of a storm (like the first year) the event will be postponed by a week.

Evenings
Evenings are our time to be together, celebrate and meet. There are 4 nights at the gathering.
Evenings plans are still not set in stone, but we can tell you we are planning a relaxed evening around the campfire, songs and stories, a tribal party, Kabbalat Shabbat, equinox ceremony, exchange blanket, storytelling around the fire, lectures, and maybe even relevant films.

Exchange Market
An ancient form of trading that took place in the before the invention of money ... Those interested in participating are encouraged to bring items they wish to exchange for other objects (or for Shekels).
Handcrafts, artifacts, useful items, and high quality items will be welcome and appreciated. Money will be excepted, although we have so many othere opportunities to buy ... Many teachers will exchange their products and this is a wonderful way for us to show appreciation for their art and work.

How to get there?
"Yatir" farm is located about 20 minutes drive from "Shoket" Junction or half an hour from Be'er Sheva. Directions will be given just before the event.
If you plan to arrive by public transportation please let up know before March 10th at avnei.d@gmail.com. We will have pick ups from Yatir junction at 3 different times, the price will depend on the number of users. Do not wait until the last minute ....
From Be'er Sheva's central bus station / train station there are several bus lines to Yatir intersection (east of Hura). Buses leave from Be'er Sheba almost every 20 minutes.

Dogs
"Avnei Derech" nature does not allow unleashed dogs. Some of the workshops will deal with materials that can be dog treats. The kitchen is a field kitchen and the farm has a pack of guard dogs.
Dog owners will benefit if they leave their dogs at home. If you still decide to bring your dog, you are asked to have it on a leash throughout the event, and you are accountable for what its doing at any given moment.
Please honor this request.

This is a drug free event - a participant who will not respect this request will be asked to leave immediately with no refunds.

At the entrance each participant will be asked to sign a disclaimer for any lawsuits against "Avnei Derech" and / or "Yatir" farm.

We will be happy to answer further questions by email, please not at the last moment :)

The gathering team

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