One answer to the question above is through Meetup.com. The thing about Meetup is that it’s easy to join. But the truth of the matter is that it’s harder to actually attend an event. I know this from experience because I’ve joined many Meetup groups in Houston Texas and Brooklyn NY when I lived there. But I never attended an event. Correction…I attended one event and no one showed up. So I never attended another event.
And that’s too bad. Because in reality, what do I have to lose? I realize and readily admit that it’s kind of scary. But my advice (mainly to myself) is just do it anyway. So I’ve joined three Hudson Valley Meetup groups: Bucket List Babes, I Love Live Music and the Beacon Drumming Circle group (otherwise known as Dance*Drum*Sing*Hum).
I’ve attended one meetup for the I Love Live Music group, and I had a great time. But the venue was crowded and I never actually met anyone from the group itself. But Mark and I did have fun. I’ve signed up for several upcoming events with the Bucket Babes group. There are some events sponsored by this group that I am seriously looking forward to, like hot air ballooning, hiking the Catskills, and line dancing with a bunch of other babes. I haven’t been able to attend anything with this group yet. Since they have such awesome things to do, you have to be Johnny-on-the-spot to get in before an event fills up. But I am definitely looking forward to upcoming meetups starting in March.
Beacon Drumming Circle Group
And that leaves me with the Beacon drumming circle group. Mark has been a member since we moved here in December. I’ve attended one drumming circle and I have to say that its a great group of people. Some drumming circles can be, how do I say it nicely, weird. Either the organizer has an agenda or the circle isn’t very organized. Consequently, it can either look like a drill class in a middle school orchestra where the band director doesn’t know the meaning of the word fun…or it can be a free-for-all where the group is so unfocused that you’re uncertain why you came.
The Beacon drumming circle group is different…in a good way. The drumming circle has a focus and it’s more than just a place to drum. It’s intention is to provide a safe and sacred space where members can heal what needs healing…be it their body or whatever else needs healing. The drumming circle is held in a wonderful space in the Beacon Yoga Center on Main Street. During the circle, members are free to break out into spontaneous dance, chanting, singing, etc. It’s a safe space to move freely and express yourself, mostly with percussion instruments. You can bring your own drum(s), of any culture, or the group provides some for you to use.
One Billion Rising
So it’s a pleasantly unusual group in general, but it was even more unusual this past week because there was a theme to the evening: to drum and dance in support of the worldwide One Billion Rising event, calling for an end to violence against women. So we had many more participants than normal and more organization around the discussion and the dancing. In spite of this, some of the drumming was pretty cool. You can listen to an excerpt from a recording at the following link.
If you’re interested in joining the next drumming circle, go to the Meetup.com page for more information. The group meets every Thursday at 7:30 pm, at the Beacon Yoga Center on Main Street. There is a $10 donation for participation.