Life at Bohemian Grove
Photos and text copyright © 1997 Kerry Richardson
There are lots of musicians at the Bohemian Grove
each summer. Some are professionals, some amateurs. Each year a number of the
campers leave the Grove and go to the local elementary school in Monte Rio, the
small town where the Grove is located. They put on a variety show open to the
public, and the money from the ticket sales benefits local schools. Above is a
photo from the 1987 benefit performance showing a mariachi band of Bohemian
clubbers called "Los Amigos." Among the performers in past years at the benefit
were tenor Dennis Day and comedian-storyteller Art Linkletter.
The Bohemian Grove is located in a forested area with
some old-growth redwood trees. The campers leave their cars in lots, but the
club runs shuttle busses inside the Grove. Sometimes the shuttle takes campers
outside the Grove, perhaps to the local golf course or a restaurant, and then
returns, as is pictured here. Note the owl on the side of the bus. That logo
also appears on cocktail napkins from the Grove. The owl is sort of the mascot
or totem animal of the Bohemian Club, and each year during the opening pageant
of the Grove encampment called "The Cremation of Care," the campers burn an
effigy of a character called "care" at a pond in front of a large cement statue
of an owl.
Each year on the last weekend of the two-and-one-half
week long summer encampment, the club holds a water carnival at its swimming
hole on the Russian River. Here we see the four man canoe race held in 1987. The
woods on the hillside at the left are part of the Bohemian Grove property.
Here is another view of the swimming hole at the
Bohemian Grove showing the lifeguard in his boat, the mock shark fin, spectators
on the overlook, and the dock at right.