Balkan Party
May 11, 2008, 9:28 pm
Filed under: Celebration

In the midst of our unpacking, Matt and I took off yesterday morning for Breezy Hill Orchard near Rhinebeck to wassail her trees and dance to Balkan music, camp under her trees, feast from local farm food, etc. It looked like this:

Breezy Hill Orchard

We got there at about 3 in the afternoon and so had most of the afternoon to enjoy the orchard, the drum workshop, the dance lesson, the music and dancing, etc. It was a gorgeous afternoon.

I had to go back this year because it was such an amazing evening last year. It looked like this:

music & dancing

I think I managed to take a picture of the wassail tree last year before all the candles went on it.

The Tree

This year (in between dancing sets, when musicians were generally jamming) looked like this:


A key part is the bonfire that’s built as it gets dark and which everyone gathers around previous to serenading and leaving offerings for the tree.


I was paying better attention this year during the wassail itself. It was beautiful.

wassail tree

I think this women’s a capella singing group was called Kadife and sang South Albanian music. One of their two performances was under the wassail tree lit by candles. It was rather inexpressible.


That’s all for tonight. The farmers are kicking us out of their house– “the internet cafe is closing in 5.”


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

That sounds so cool! Do you have any of the wassailing music on your computer?

Comment by Carrie Wilce

No, sorry, I didn’t think to try recording any! Zlatne Uste has a MySpace page at with music and Slavic Soul Party’s website has music at, but I couldn’t find any of Kadife’s music online, unfortunately. They were awesome.

Comment by bekahbeth

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