The Labyrinth in the Woods grand opening will be held Saturday May 14 (rain date, May 15) from 1:00 – 4:00 pm at the Labyrinth. Visit www.btlt.org/labyrinth-in-the-woods for directions and additional details about the Labyrinth.
In a unique community collaboration, the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust (Land Trust) and First Parish Church UCC of Brunswick (FPC), have built a labyrinth in a natural setting that is open to all. The Labyrinth in the Woods was built in honor of Susan Fitzgerald, founder of FPC’s labyrinth ministry. Located at Crystal Spring Farm, it provides an opportunity for meditation and spiritual practice in a tranquil forest just minutes from downtown Brunswick.
The partners are celebrating its grand opening and welcoming the public on the afternoon of May 14.
The ancient practice of walking a labyrinth has been known to nearly all cultures and religions around the globe. A labyrinth is not a maze. Mazes have dead ends and are designed to confuse. Labyrinths offer a single path whose course winds back and forth within the bounds of a circle, ultimately leading to the center.
Many labyrinth walkers find that following a path to the center stills the mind and opens the heart. The Land Trust and FPC encourage visitors to find their own meaning in walking the Labyrinth. Labyrinth walking can be a form of meditation, prayer, relaxation, or simply a new way to interact with nature.
BTLT Executive Director, Angela Twitchell said, “The Labyrinth provides a great way to connect people of all faiths with nature.”
The project came about when FPC had a need for open, natural space and reached out to the Land Trust. For over a decade, the Reverend Mary Baard, Senior Pastor at FPC, and Susan Fitzgerald, the leader of FPC’s Labyrinth Ministry, dreamed of expanding their indoor labyrinth ministry by creating an outdoor labyrinth. For years they talked about possible sites, but couldn’t find space on the Church’s small grounds. At the same time, the Land Trust had been looking for ways to build connections with diverse community groups.
In 2014, Mary conceived the idea of building a labyrinth along the trails of Crystal Spring Farm, and leaders at Land Trust agreed that a labyrinth would be a unique new resource in the broader community.
FPC and the Land Trust created a planning committee to work out the details. FPC agreed to raise money for building the Labyrinth and getting the program established, and to act as the community contact for those who want a guided experience of the Labyrinth. The Land Trust would provide the site and ongoing maintenance. Linkel Construction, a local company experienced in stonework, was hired to design and build the labyrinth.
Labyrinth in the Woods honors Susan Fitzgerald who was a dedicated leader at FPC and long-time member of the Land Trust. Susan cared deeply about connecting people to the land.
The Labyrinth is located a short distance off the Garden Trail between the Tom Settlemire Community Garden and Main Loop trail at Crystal Spring Farm. Nestled in the woods, the 7-circuit labyrinth occupies a 50-foot diameter circle and is constructed of granite paving stones and natural mulch. It is open to the public from dawn to dusk.