1997 33Reaching Sideways

August 3-5 at Ronora Lodge and Retreat Center in Watervliet Michigan

We will gather in Trilogy Lodge, a dorm-style lodge that sleeps up to 25. Catered gourmet Vegan meals, nourishing workshops, wildflower walks and worship circles make up this weekend "back to the land" on the 400+ acres of woodland and lake within the spirit-filled place called Ronora. A few workshops, plus time to explore, relax, drum, sing and commune with nature and each other.

Workshops will feature hands-on ice-dyeing, solar cooking, chanting/singing, and a wildflower/plant walk.

Our theme comes from the title of a UU women's journal. UU foremother Rosemary Matson says, "Sara Best, a lay woman in the Joseph Priestly District Women and Religion Committee, with the help of her friends, created a journal REACHING SIDEWAYS - A Continental Exchange of Views and Ideas chronicling the successes and failures of those trying to implement the Women and Religion Resolution. It was a voice when there were very few other voices in the denomination speaking for women and it proved to be the writing of our Women and Religion story as it was being lived. Sara Best produced her first issue in October 1981 and sent out her last issue on June 15, 1991. REACHING SIDEWAYS is sorely missed."

Remember to bring drums (and musical instruments if you like), perhaps an item to place on one of the 5 altars, and a small item of personal significance to pass along via the Giveaway Blanket.

See you at Ronora! Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have questions.



  • Wildflower/Birding Walk - led by Kimberly Ginn
  • Chanting Circle - led by Gretchen Ohmann
  • Solar Cooking – led by Diana Mendelsohn. Learn to cook using the power of the sun!
  • Ice Dyeing Workshop – led by Jenny Ross. Create your own, one-of-a-kind silk altar cloth or scarf using pre-treated fabric, ice and powdered fiber reactive dyes.  Ice dyeing is a variation on low water immersion dyeing where ice cubes are layered with powdered dyes and fabric and patterns are created on the fabric as the ice melts and the dye colors run together.  We will use 44 inch square pieces of crepe de chine to create either a decorative altar cloth or a wearable scarf.  Participants need to supply a screen or rack and a container that it will fit inside.  A kitchen cooling rack and a plastic tub or a circular rack and a bucket will be fine.  Jenny Ross will supply all other materials.  If you want specific colors in your finished piece, please contact Jenny in advance at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. so she can bring them.  Cost will be $40 payable to Jenny on site.  You can bring your own fabric and use Jenny’s dyes and materials for $20.  Jenny Ross is a fiber artist who sells hand dyed scarves, accessories, and fabrics.  She teaches dyeing and hand embroidery workshops.  You see her work on her website www.whatjennymakes.com


Friday 4 - 7 pm CHECK IN
                                 make your own snacks/sandwiches
Friday 8 - 9 pm OPENING CEREMONY

Saturday 8 - 9 am BREAKFAST
Saturday 9-9:30 am kitchen clean up
Saturday 9:30 -10:30 am MORNING CIRCLE
Saturday 10:30 - noon WORKSHOP 1 or Free Time
Saturday noon - 1 LUNCH
Saturday 1-1:30 pm kitchen clean up
Saturday 1:30 - 3:30 pm WORKSHOP 2 or Free Time
Saturday 3:30 - 6:00 pm Free Time
Saturday 6 - 7 pm DINNER
Saturday 7-7:30 pm kitchen clean up
Saturday 8 - 9 pm GATHERING

Sunday 8 - 9 am BREAKFAST
Sunday 9-9:30 am whole-lodge clean up
Sunday 10 - 11 am CLOSING and Farewells
Sunday 11 - noon Free Time