Wafting along a sinewy road in California’s Monte Rio, heat waves disperse off the blacktop and distort the scenery ahead, as if to suggest the splendor of the land is merely a mirage. Hypnotic phalanxes of redwoods edge the highway, defending the secrets within.
July 13th was the official unofficial start date of the 2 week long Bohemian Grove retreat for the Bohemian Club, whose males-only members include prominent business leaders, artists, and former U.S. presidents. The motto of the San Francisco based club is “Weaving Spiders Come Not Here,” meaning business deals are to be left outside. Every year, elite literati come together to enjoy the beauty of nature, arts and intellectual talks. The start of the yearly retreat is a ceremony that involves a traditional musical drama celebrating nature and summertime, whereby all the members expunge their “cares” of the world.
The Bohemian Club is notorious for its secrecy and exclusivity. The $25,000 initiation fee and $5,000 yearly dues are mere tokens of appreciation for the costs of running this club that hosts ornate monthly theatrics and dinner parties far surpassing these paltry fees. Don’t even try to name drop your way in, with over 2,000 members with a plethora of Bushes, Basses, Rockefellers and Morgans, the invitation to join in extremely limited and usually falls to those with legacy.
But once you do step through the military-protected compound, you’ll enjoy a carefree world of heavy libation and liberation.
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