Brotherhood by the Bog: A Spiritual Experience for Pagan and Pagan-friendly Men

Tribal Cave Painting
Artwork by Sage Haver.

Brotherhood Across the Boundaries:
Valuing Our Diverse Tribes

April 11-14, 2019

First Landing State Park
2500 Shore Drive
Virginia Beach, VA

Campsites #38 and #39



Brotherhood by the Bog

Brotherhood by the Bog is an annual men's spiritual and bonding experience that takes place in the spring at First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach. The focus is primarily Pagan though all respectful seekers are welcome. We welcome men of all sexual orientations and backgrounds.

This year the retreat is being co-sponsored by Brotherhood by the Bog and the Tidewater Spirit Coalition men's group.

This year's theme includes:

  •  Valuing and understanding our brothers across various Pagan paths.  These might include Wicca, Druidry, Norse Paganism, Shamanism, and other paths.
  •  Valuing and understanding our brothers of various sexualities. This might include gay, bi, straight, transgender, polyamory, and even fetish groups.
  •  Valuing and understanding our brothers from different age groups.  There's room for youth, warriors, and elders.
  •  Valuing and understanding our brothers with diverse spiritual practices.  These might include things like various divination practices, and so on.

Guest Presenter(s):


Sir Hex Nottingham  Musical Guest: Sir Hex Nottingham

Raised as a Shield Knight and Priest of the Loyal Arthurian Warband by Arthur Pendragon in Stonehenge, student of the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids, member of the Ancient Order of Druids in America, and appointed as Principle Drummer of the Stonehenge Druids. A lifelong Witch, studying the many ways of the Craft since childhood, Hex has made 5 pilgrimages to the United Kingdom visiting some of the most sacred Druid and Celtic temples, and worked with many amazing people along the way, even sharing the stage with international Pagan recording artist Damh the Bard to an audience of 400 Druids in Glastonbury and two private shows of 100 in Pennsylvania. In 2015, Hex conducted the Midsummer Sunset Ceremony inside Stonehenge to a crowd of about 30,000 people. Hex, along with Stonehenge ArchDruid Rollo Maughling, made history by being the first booked musical act at Stonehenge Summer Solstice since its 30 year ban.  Hex may also have been the first Druid to make global news on Yahoo's global news homepage.

 Be sure to join our Facebook group and RSVP on our Facebook event page.

Buy a Brotherhood by the Bog 2019 T-shirt 

 T-shirts are $20 each and all proceeds go toward the retreat.  Various sizes will be available at the retreat.


2019 T-shirt




Thursday, April 11, 2019

There are no formal activities for Thursday.  This will be a laid back to arrive and settle in.  Informal activities might include hiking, swimming, a scavenger hunt, a tour of the First Landing State Park Visitor Center, field trips to the Edgar Cayce A.R.E. center and/or Neptune statue, and meals on your own. 

12noon - Staff arrive / set-up

2pm and later – Early guests can arrive early and set-camp. Check in at main campsite. Feel free to bring decorations to decorate your campsite. Guests will be randomly placed in campsites and "tribes" via the sorting bowl.  Will you be part of the Sasquatch tribe (Earth), Mothman tribe (Air), Chessie (Chesapeake Bay Monster) tribe (Water), or Dismal Swamp Firebird tribe (fire)?

8-10pm – Conversations around the fire.


Friday, April 12, 2019

 Formal retreat activities will be begin in the late afternoon.  Those who arrived early on Thursday might consider continuing the informal activities suggested for Thursday.  Friday arrivals will be setting up camp on Friday afternoon.

1pm-6pm – Regular guests arrive / set-camp. Check in at main campsite. Feel free to bring decorations to decorate your campsite. Guests will be randomly placed in campsites and "tribes" via the sorting bowl.  Will you be part of the Sasquatch tribe (Earth), Mothman tribe (Air), Chessie (Chesapeake Bay Monster) tribe (Water), or Dismal Swamp Firebird tribe (fire)? After setting up camp, each tribe will be given the opportunity to create a shield for their tribe.  Arrive by early afternoon Friday for the best opportunities for participating.

6pm – Dinner: Camp pizzas and salad.

 7pm – Icebreaker: Declaring Your Tribe. By now you have had the opportunity to co-create the space by decorating your campsites and by co-creating a shield for your tribe.  Our icebreaker will involve each tribe unveiling their shield.

 8pm – Opening ritual on the beach.  What do you want to gain from the weekend?  A gift for a gift.  We'll offer our hopes for the weekend and an offering to the sea.  Ritual led by Sage Haver.

 9-10pm – "Outside looking in.  Inside looking out."  This is an opportunity for us to get to know each other better.  Each of us belongs to many tribes in our life outside the bog.  Some tribes are well-understood and others have special needs that we wish the world outside knew more about.  This is your opportunity to introduce yourself and the tribes you bring with you to the weekend.  You can share as much or as little as you like.  We will have a story stick and whoever holds the story stick has the floor.  The discussion will be moderated so that no one person dominates the conversation.


Saturday, April 13, 2019

9am – Breakfast: Sausage (and veggie sausage), eggs, toast, and jelly

10am – Panel Discussion: "Valuing our Diverse Spiritual Paths." A panel of folks from different Pagan spiritual paths will answer questions and share information about their specific paths. Moderated by Sage Haver.

11am – Morning hike

12noon – Lunch: Hot dogs, chips, and sides

1pm – Panel Discussion: "The Intersection of Sexuality, Masculinity, and Spirituality."  A panel of folks of different sexual orientations and lifestyles will answer questions about how their sexuality and gender orientations play into their spirituality.  Moderated by Mel Mystery.

2pm – Workshop: "So, You Want to be Masculine, but you don't have_____."  Let's talk about the masculine disconnect.  Let's talk about regional approaches, ups downs and the like.  Let's talk about you, me and them.  Don't forget to bring what you need for this.  Presented by David Spain.

3pm – Craft Activity: "Making Tribal Masks."  Make a mask to represent your tribe - whether your Bog tribe or one of the tribes you belong to in life.  We'll provide masks and craft materials like markers, glue, and so on.  While you're on you're traveling through the park on Friday and Saturday, you might look for and collect shells, stones, sticks, and other natural items to include in your mask.

4pm – Workshop: "Tribal Drumming."  Bring your drums as we sit down to learn about how to drum in a "tribal" context.  Presented by Sir Hex Nottingham.

5pm – Dinner: Make your own "haystack" nachos.  We'll provide the basic ingredients and you can build your own. 

7pm – Main Ritual:  Tribes of the Stag God. You may know him as Cernunnos, Herne the Hunter, Pan, Faunus, Dionysus, Shiva Pashupati, or some other name.  The Stag God has gifts for the tribes and we offer a gift in return.  Ritual led by Mel Mystery.

8-10pm – Drumming.  We'll have on the beach or at the campsite depending on weather.  Bring your drums and other instruments. Led by Sir Hex Nottingham.


Sunday, April 14, 2019

8am -11:30am -- Activities will be light.  Folks should have their campsites packed up and clean up any trash so that we can leave the park by 11:30am. 

9am – Breakfast: Bagels, cream cheese, fruit

10am – Closing Ritual. 
What gifts and experiences do you bring back from this retreat to your tribes and communities at home?  Ritual led by Wes Jolly.

11:30am – Lunch at Shorebreak Pizza and Taphouse (2941 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach) for anyone who wants to stick around and possibly a visit to the A.R.E. or Neptune Statue.

1pm -- Everyone heads their separate ways