the two rules of krampuslauf philadelphia

as we prepare to do this simple, short, communal thing this saturday, i, as founder and as a co-coordinator, have just a few requests to all participating.

1. BE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN FUN, AND AT LEAST SOME OF SOMEONE ELSE’S. as arun, organizer of the portland oregon lauf said this week, “I enjoy the potency released when you invoke something otherwise neglected in your culture. Every force that we incarnate conveys the gifts and challenges of its influence upon us.” this is a celebration and example of what community can be, on the spur of the moment, and with relatively little direction. all the parts are important and welcome, and are not judged or quantified. do not come expecting cirque du soleil. carry a banner or a drum, or offer to stay back and tend the fire and the cider. as long as you are respectful of what others have brought to the event, i can promise there is a place for you.

2. DON’T SCARE ANYONE WHO OBVIOUSLY DOESN’T WANT TO BE SCARED. as amused as i am to know that a loyal WHYY listener thinks i should be imprisoned for child abuse, i do ask you to use good judgment. the core of this group is families, and families who know one another well; the community-owned liberty lands is, quite literally, their park. respect the park and the families. anyone who terrifies a child and doesn’t stop immediately will be sorry that they didn’t.

if either of those “rules” takes the fun out of it for you, you might just choose to enjoy another event. we know that for 99% of the people coming, they are intuitive.

there will be either a box or a bag in the park with extra costuming components – small handdrums, horns, and i think there is an extra sheepskin – as well as krampus t-shirts to put on over kids’ coats. first come, first served. see you there!