AllWays Intentional Community is the culmination of many dreams and much effort. The members of Athens Area Pagans have wanted to create a pagan centric space for many years. There are few outdoor spaces that pagans can freely use without running into restrictions or pushback. As such, the pagan community has been at a disadvantage. And AAP wanted to help improve the situation by providing a place for pagans to come and commune with nature and practice their craft without fear of persecution or violating local law.
We also want to support the Athens community in whatever small way we can. There are many issues in Athens including food deserts, affordable housing, community use space, etc. What if we could create a space that addressed multiple issues?
Over the past decade or so, members have periodically looked at land options. Our requirements were specific. We wanted a decent sized piece of land that was in a relatively natural state. It needed to be easily accessible, preferably on the bus line to make access available to everyone in the county. And it should allow for a little bit of developement (housing, workshops, gardens, community building). Most places were not suitable. A couple were. One deal fell through. But finally, we found a parcel of land that met our requirements and the sale went through.
After much back and forth, we finally closed on a property in the northern part of Clarke County in late 2021. We finally had our space! And it was time to get to work.
And there’s so much work. The land had been abandoned for decades. It was covered in trash and plants had grown up all over. The only place that was still managed was the natural gas pipeline. There is no infrastructure left and no utilities. Right now, everything has to be done by hand or battery power.
The first year we cleared out an area that we discovered was an old home site. The old home was bulldozed and left. We have turned this area into a ritual circle. It is usable but can use many improvements. A dedication ceremony was held which was attended by members, some community members, and a couple of county representatives.
We have also cleared the old farm road. It is now easily walkable, and could be driven on with a sturdy vehicle. We have also made or improved multiple walking trails over the property. Of course we intend to expand on that work.
Moving into the near future, we intend to harvest the old pine farm on the back end and either build there or return that area to natural habitat. We will also add eco friendly toilets and seating for public use as soon as possible. That will make the spaces more usable and inviting.
If you are interested in getting involved and helping out, check out our volunteer section.