The Ground Healing Ceremony
The May 4, 2005 ceremony that marked the beginning of Rieth Village was called a ground-healing rather than a groundbreaking. Participants found themselves spreading compost rather than watching a shovel spear the earth.
“The word ‘groundbreaking’ suggests that human development must break the ground, but we hope that our project will help heal and renew the earth,” Luke Gascho, then Merry Lea’s executive director, observed at the time.
An osprey circled overhead during the proceedings and yellow warblers and a warbling vireo provided music.