event overview

Gaia Gathering is a multi-dimensional exploration of all things Earth.  Envisioned and steered by a group of local artists and activists, this collaborative and ambitious project aims to bring a focus to our vital relationship with our planet. The event highlights the intimate and tangible dimensions of our earthly abode - the neighborhoods we live in and the land we live on. 


Gaia Gathering aims to inform, challenge, inspire, and move us to action. We will explore this using a mix of art exhibits, musical and movement performances, presentations, hands-on creations, workshops and discourse. The rich array of programs and offerings bring together community groups, organizations, businesses and individuals to share, teach and facilitate community involvement. These offerings reflect our community's diversity and are designed to appeal to be accessible to a wide range of ages, interests, and groups. 


All events will be held at Threshold, a community event and co-working space on Madison’s near east side, with the exception of a presentation about sustainability plans and a garden stroll at Olbrich Gardens. Threshold provides a perfect container for these offerings and serves as a hub that supports cross fertilization and enhances collaboration within our community.



may 1


7 pm (doors at 6:30)
It's Time - Opening Concert and fundraiser with SistaStrings


Milwaukee Artists SistaStrings, a Mikwaukee-based sister duo who combine their many years of gospel singing with their classical music training and  R&B influences culminating in a vibey, lush sound with thick string harmonies between violin and cello and soulful voices. SistaStrings' passion and deep dedication to their unique musical path and to bringing social change, create an unforgettable experience. 
Opening: Climatic Sounds

$20 advance/$25 door

Seats are limited so be sure to get your tickets early!  

Music Makes a Difference (providing artist's fees), Threshold and
The Wisconsin Room



may 2

6:30 - 8:30 pm - Exhibit Opening

Embodying Gaia: From Plunder of the Earth to Transformative Beauty

Thursday night will be a night of beauty, challenge and exploration with Beth Racette speaking about her Gaia Paintings, the exhibition "Tar Sands Oil and Pipeline:
A cradle to grave story" organized by the Sierra Club and 350 Madison, and a dance evolution with spoken word exploring environmental themes. 


Art Shegone, a Native Elder, will give a welcome and a blessing for the Gaia Gathering

Also on display (Front Room): Synapses: Latinx Artist Collectivo (featuring Richie Morales,  Angelica Contreras, and Evelyn Galindo ) will be showcasing their work.



may 3


5 - 9 pm: MMoCA Gallery Night 
Exhibit and Mural Creation
Beth Racette's Gaia Series (open to the public only 5:00-6:30) and Synapses (5:00-9:00) will be on display. Synapses Latinx Artist Collectivo will be leading a community mural creation.

7 - 9 pm

Soul In The Multiverse, An Evening Adventure*
with bestselling author and Dream Shaman, Robert Moss

Tickets $25

For further information, contact Lauranne Bailey: 608/332-3692

* Note: this event is organized separately from the Gaia Gathering.



may 4


11 am - 5 pm
The Beehive Day!

See full schedule and descriptions on The Beehive Page

Saturday offers a wide variety of activities and offerings, including talks, panels, art-making, music, healing arts, and workshops! No matter when you drop by during the day, you will be able to make, learn, connect, and grow. A full schedule of learning opportunities is coming soon!

Activities will include:

Art Making

Richard Ely - Torn Paper Landscape Collages

Sarvodaya - Community Mandala Creation

Beth Racette - Animal Portraits

Synapeses Latinx Artist Collectivo - Mural Creation


Miriam Hall - Writing workshops

Kristina Amelong - Human Evolution Writing Exercise

Trevin Gay - Aren't We Delicious? Exercise


Miriam Hall and Alexandra Connors - movement workshop


Other Activities

Larry Johns - Effigy Mounds Walking Tour


Adam Briske - Science Discussion

Midwest Environmental Advocates

Friends of Starkweather Creek

Sustain Dane

Ally Connors - Mycology

Shedd Farley, Natural Path Sanctuary - Green Burial

Bob Birmingham- Effigy Mounds Talk


REAP Food Group

Beth Racette - Animal Portraits

Sarvodaya - Community Mandala

Seed Potting Activity

Sidewalk chalk - weather permitting


may 5

All events are located at Threshold unless otherwise noted. 


10 - 11 am

An Introduction to Joanna Macy’s “Work that Reconnects”

“The Work that Reconnects helps people uncover and experience their innate connections with each other and with the self-healing powers of the web of life, so that they may be enlivened and motivated to play their part in creating a sustainable civilization.” - Joanna Macy

Led by Penny Andrews, Beth Racette, Ron Schell and Sunshine Jones

For ages 13 and up


11 am - 12 pm

Council of All Beings Communal Ritual 

“The Council of All Beings is a communal ritual in which participants step aside from their human identity and speak on behalf of another life-form. A simple structure for spontaneous expression, it aims to heighten awareness of our interdependence in the living body of Earth, and to strengthen our commitment to defend it. The ritual serves to help us acknowledge and give voice to the suffering of our world. It also serves, in equal measure, to help us experience the beauty and power of our interconnectedness with all life.” - Joanna Macy

Led by Penny Andrews, Beth Racette, Ron Schell and Sunshine Jones

For ages 10 and up


12 - 1 pm

Qigong with Rosebud

Qigong is a meditative movement practice developed perhaps 4000 years ago by early Taoists in northeast China.  It helps cultivate good health, body flexibility, calmness and mental focus. It helps ground practitioners to Earth and to center their attention in the body.  It is slow and gentle and easy for most everyone to practice. Rosebud (aka David Sparer) has studied various forms of Qigong since 1975.


12 - 1 pm - at Lowell Elementary yard, Atwood side

Outdoor Play for Young Children with Linda Dykstra

ages 2-4 with their adults

Outdoor play nourishes children’s sense of wonder, creativity, and connection to all life.  Early Childhood Educator Linda Dykstra takes her 2 to 4-year-old students outside in all types of weather year round. Linda allows them to follow their own curiosity and supports them in safely exploring the natural world and atypical spaces. She will show adults and children how to assess a potential play space and find what is fun about an area, what is dangerous, and how to stay safe. Learning to assess risk in new and unpredictable spaces helps children become resilient and learn the skills to overcome difficulties and become lifelong learners.

1:30 - 3:30 pm - at Olbrich Botanical Gardens

Sustainability Talk and Guided Tour

Olbrich Botanical Gardens will offer a discussion of their sustainability efforts, followed by a guided tour of the gardens. 

5 - 7 pm

Community Potluck

The Gaia Gathering concludes with a potluck and community conversations, where participants can gather to connect with each other, process what they've learned, and plan new paths forward.


Ella Kunstman and high school students from the Madison Youth Climate Team will talk about their organizing efforts in Madison, throughout the state, and in connection with the Sunrise Movement (Green New Deal) and International Youth Environmental movement.


All Things Earth,  Performance by Jamie Dawson

Grounded by her care and love for the beauty of the Earth and of other human beings, Jamie Dawson in All Things Earth explores the connections between self, Earth, and caring for each other. Join Jamie as she utilizes poetry, song and movement to evoke change and restore balance.


Jamie Dawson, originally from Tampa, Florida is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison where, as part of the First Wave Hip Hop and Urban Arts Scholarship Program, she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Afro-American Studies and Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. The pillars of arts, academics, and activism are the foundation upon which Jamie Dawson built her undergraduate collegiate career.



Gaia Gathering is generously supported by the following:

Music Makes a Difference, Promega Corporation, CORE,
The Farley Center for Peace, Social Justice and Sustainability, Art at the Threshold, Martin Glass, the Wisconsin Room, the Sierra Club, Madison 350, Olbrich Gardens, Alejandra Bustamante Agency - State Farm Insurance, Midwest Environmental Advocates, Awakening the Wheels, Monona Bank, Community Groundworks, KIPP Corporations