Pennsic Memorial Stone Project Underway
Dame TSivia bas Tamara v’Amberview
Features Reporter –Pennsic Independent
“The People of the Folk-Assembly (Society) raised this stone in order to give honor to those who have walked these fields and fallen. We will meet again.” These words will be carved in runes on a nine-ton slab of Pennsylvania sandstone to be installed at Cooper’s Lake as a memorial to those in the SCA who have passed away over the years. The project is the brainchild of Lord Valdis of Gotland (mka Ken Koll) of the shire of Montevale in the East Kingdom, an idea that came to him after he lost a good friend.
Next year, an eleven-foot slab of Butler sandstone will be delivered to Pennsic, and the public will be invited to help carve the memorial itself. The decision to choose local stone was twofold: first to avoid shipping costs, and second to make this memorial truly part of Pennsic by using local stone.
The three foot wide slab will be worked on by approximately 200 to 250 attendees after some training in the use of the tools and the techniques needed for the project, says Lord Valdis. This year, he can be seen either at his merchant booth (#64) or out near the large tree located near booths 108/109, carving a sample stone and raising some of the approximately $6,000 needed for the project. The memorial stone itself is anticipated to stand about seven feet above ground level when completed and installed.
The Gotland-style artwork on the stone features a dragon and tiger, and a Viking boat sailing on Cooper’s Lake with its shields adorned in a style reminiscent of the Æthelmearc arms. On its top there will be a valkyrie welcoming the fallen soul, while a bard plays a harp in the background.
If the sample stone Lord Valdis is working on this year turns out well, he is considering auctioning it off to help raise some of the project’s costs. “If we find ourselves with extra cash, we intend to purchase some concrete benches to install by the memorial stone, so visitors may sit in quiet contemplation,” he noted.
Donations to the project may be made while Lord Valdis is carving, at numerous donation cans around Pennsic, or through Paypal via the email address of PennsicRuneStone@oakthorne.com. The web site to read more on this project is pennsicrunestone.com.