Shire Forecast – Spring Issue 2024

Here is the spring issue of the Shire Forecast. In this seasonal publication, you can read about the weather, latest news, and the events hobbits might be interested in.

 

Chilly winter gives way to a warm and sunny spring

This winter seemed longer than usual. Maybe it was because of the many weeks of cold weather and days without much sunlight that made it seem so. And not only has the weather made many hobbits shiver – there have been rumours of uncles and detectives gone mysteriously missing here in the Shire, and it’s been said there have been evil spirits involved in these cases. Some hobbits have dismissed these tales with a shrug and a snort before continuing to gossip about their neighbour’s doings, but some, not at least the younger, slightly adventurous hobbits, have been more curious and gone out of their way to solve these missing cases. Thanks to their efforts, each lost case is now solved, and while trying to solve these mysteries, they have boosted the ale business at the local inns.

 

Now though, winter is turning into spring, and with more sunlight, we hope that folks don’t get lost that easily on the Shire roads. You might see the first blooms pop up here and there, and the sleepy forest critters are slowly waking up from their long slumber. Local farmers are already eagerly working their fields for the sowing, hoping for good crops; and the local sows are also eagerly eyeing those fields, equally hoping for good crops. And there’s good reason for hope: the crops have been given a good blessing during the winter, when the loud wassailing party visited them in January, spilling lots of cider and making such a racket that all potential bad spirits must be taking a long, long holiday somewhere far away at the moment.

 

Wassailing has quaranteed good apple yield so far – more cider for wassailers!

 

Party season awaits

Each year, the increased sunlight seems to give everyone an extra boost of energy, and this year is no different. Spring brings us many occasions where you can shake the winter dust away and feel born anew again – and we are not only referring to spring baths here. There are also many occasions for parties as the days get warmer. In February, some hobbits already warmed up for the upcoming party season at the Spring Swayers Dance, a romance-themed masquerade baaah ball. The sheepish puns might have outweighed the romantic content a bit, at least momentarily. But not to worry – if you missed the dance, there will be many occasions to find a partner at the spring parties that lie ahead. Mid-March brings us a whole weekend of parties: first, the Pie Day Friday at the Dragon on the 15th, March OAKS concert in Oldfurlong on the 16th, and as a cherry on top, the Bullroarer Took’s Day party in Brockenborings on the 17th. Pies will be eaten, dances will be danced, and drinks will be… spilt. Hopefully not inside the Dragon though, to spare the nerves of the local waitresses. And if the parties are not enough for you, you can spill yer ales even more when the Spring Festival is on.

 

A bit later in May, there’s one more party to celebrate: the Green Dragon Friday turns 16 years (at least according to Barmy’s long record of damage caused by the guests). That makes countless spills on the rug, laughs, broken lute strings, steps on the dance floor, grumbles from the back seats, late-night fireworks shows, and many fine memories. Prepare yourselves for another fine party at the Dragon in the best of hobbit company sometime in May!

 

To limit the damage to the inn, the GDF anniversaries have sometimes been celebrated outdoors

 

Season for spring traditions

In addition to the aforementioned spring parties, there are also some other traditions to look forward to. The Brandy Badgers have been absent from the Michel Delving Square, which means that they are up to something – and that something probably being their annual spring project. Each spring, they summon folks to search for the mythical musical badgers somewhere in the Shire. So far, they have never spotted any, so they are also preparing a short musical to amuse everyone if the search is unfruitful. The badger search and musical will probably take place sometime in April.

 

There is also another spring tradition that some look forward to – and some dread – the May Queen and King election. Last year, hobbits elected Lottie and Arigo as their May Royals. Together, they have arranged festivities and blessed merry events with their noble hobbity presence. Soon, it will be time to pass the flower crown to someone else though. Any hobbit is free to sign up as a candidate, as long as they haven’t been elected before. Some hobbits even nominate others as candidates. It is always exciting to see who will get crowned and how their reign as royals will be. Earlier royals have, for example, stopped the rain, partied all year round, played the bagpipes, grumbled, thrown apples at the lads who nominated them in the first place, etc. Some hobbits might get a bit agitated to think of becoming a May Royal for a whole year, but there’s no need to worry – just enjoy the fun that is involved in wearing the crown.

 

We have witnessed many May Royals over the years – who will it be this year?

 

This Spring Issue also starts the third year of Shire forecasts. A warm thank you to all our readers. Remember, you can also send us suggestions, tasty gossip and grand drawings for our future issues. The next publication, the summer issue, will be published in the beginning of June. Feel free to send you contributions to the address given below.

 

OOC: This is a seasonal publication providing hooks and information on events for hobbit roleplayers on the Laurelin server. If you have anything we could add to the next publication (in this case, the summer issue), please send a message to pycellawoodberry(a)gmail.com.

Pycella Woodberry

Pie maven.

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