Society & Culture

Fatal overdose at festival held at Vermont legislator’s farm

By Guy Page and Rob Roper 
A Boston man died of a drug overdose July 7 at a regional version of the Burning Man Festival hosted by a Vermont legislator.

Every year, State Representative Kirk White (D/P-Windsor-Addison) hosts the Firefly Arts Collective on his family farm in Bethel. 

The festival is described as a New England version of Burning Man. Its website says, “This event operates under the 10 Principles of Burning Man: not to dictate how people should be and act, but as a reflection of the community’s ethos and culture as it has organically developed.”

A neighbor who shared video of the event, including the arrival of ambulances and police, said these events often are loud, disruptive, rife with recreational drug use and public sexual activity. This year’s festivities saw three overdoses requiring an emergency response, with one death resulting.

Rep. Kirk White

Asked to confirm or deny rumors that a death occurred, Bethel Fire Chief David Aldrighetti confirmed that there was an overdose death on July 7 at the festival, and that two other overdose victims, including the wife of the deceased, were treated and survived. The Chief also said this isn’t the first overdose at the Firefly festival in its 15-year history.

The Vermont State Police responded to VDC’s request for information on the incidents with a general press release:

“The Vermont State Police is investigating a death that occurred during the Firefly Festival in Bethel on Friday, July 7, 2023. State police learned at about 11:26 p.m. July 7 that the Bethel Fire Department and White River Valley Ambulance had responded to a 911 call regarding an unresponsive 35-year-old man from Boston, Massachusetts. He was pronounced deceased on scene about 10 minutes later. 

“The body was transported to the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington for an autopsy. A determination on the cause and manner of death is pending toxicology testing, which can take several weeks or months to complete. Preliminary investigation indicates the death is not suspicious. The name of the decedent is being withheld at this stage of the investigation. 

“Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Vermont State Police in Royalton at 802-234-9933. No further details are available at this time.

Firefly released this statement on its website:

“Many of you may have witnessed emergency vehicles and personnel on Friday night. In the interest of community transparency and to address community questions we would like to share the following information.

“On the evening of Friday, July 7th, three participants had medical emergencies at our event. Firefly volunteers and retained on-site medical staff worked quickly to provide care and call for outside help.

“Professional medical staff escorted one distressed participant to the First Aid tent for care and observation. During care they became unresponsive, and medical staff and volunteers performed CPR until the arrival of local emergency responders. Unfortunately, this participant was pronounced dead after receiving care from local emergency responders.

“Two other participants in distress were transported to nearby hospitals for care. They have both been discharged and are expected to make a full recovery.”

Rep. White is serving in his second term as a state legislator. He is described on the Firefly history page as “neopagan writer and Vermont state assembly member….” White is also the author of Adept Circle Magic, described on Amazon as, “Written for every Wiccan who is ready to expand his or her knowledge of the Craft, this comprehensive volume addresses the practical matters of spells, meditations, and rituals, as well as ethical and spiritiual [sic] concerns important to witches of every skill level.”

In a May 2022 interview with VT Digger, White described Firefly as “a bunch of hippies in my woods,” but he has not yet responded to VDC’s questions regarding this story.

Categories: Society & Culture

18 replies »

  1. We have to assume that this democrat voted in the affirmative to assure that no gatherings can take place where any militia-type behavior is promoted or fomented, because someone might get hurt at such a thing…

    • This was my first thought as well.
      Of course mourning the loss of the person who passed. Having 30 years of EMS under my belt I am not unfamiliar with what likely transpired. I will leave it there.

    • Daniel Banyai was arrested for having a gun range on his property where no one was killed. What he was really arrested for was doing something on his property that someone else didn’t like. The state legislature even passed an unconstitutional law in order to stop him. Trump is right, they are coming after us and he is standing in their way. FREE DANIEL BANYAI

  2. What is wrong with the people in Bethel voting in this creep 2X’s? Are you really that dislocated to things around you or do just not take the time to vote?

  3. RIP. And after we proffer that. let us reflect upon the ceaseless wonders, blessings, and benefits to humankind, that “recreational” drugs, both illegal and legal, have provided for us all.

    Party on, democrats!

  4. The Firefly Event has a long history in Bethel. Every year, the week of the Fourth of July a different wicker insect has been burned much like is done at the Burning Man Festival. I’m glad to see it getting some limelight. It is a spiritual event, more so than an art event. Bethel isn’t the only tucked in the woods Vermont location that these activities are being practiced. Protect yourself and your community with prayer and the power of the cross.

  5. Typical personage populating our “cargo-cult” nihilistic Legislature. Supported S5 and all the anti-humanistic bills in the Legislature. Apparently his constituents are of similar mindset

  6. Too bad it wasn’t the politician OD’ing. Would be one less dingdong in office for a minute.

  7. “All the news that fits, we print.”

    Did Democrats invent recreational drugs (legal and illegal)?
    How about recreational alcohol use? Also a Democratic invention?

    A Wiccan/Democrat legislator???!!! Now there’s a morsel to feast upon.

    Let no opportunity pass without trashing somebody about something.

    • If they did not invent it, they sure have perfected it JayDee. You have to admit that Vermont went from Republicans and Cows to Meth Heads and hopeless poverty really quick after the New Yorkers moved in.

      • The invasion of the radical left in VT started soon after the 1968 Democratic Convention, when they lost the election, some of the leaders headed to the communes in NEK and wanted to find a way to impact our national elections; their goal was to change NH from Republican to Democratic and impact the NH primary. They looked at Vermont and recognized it shared the same demographics as New Hampshire at the time, VT became their testing ground. Bernie was hanging around those communes at that time too. They never dreamed then how successful their plan would be.😑

  8. Man, who took that video?! I’d never want to go NEAR those evil weirdos. Vermont is dark in many ways. So sad.

  9. Any wonder why our legislature is in such a shape with these type of “progressive” thinkers? Hey, give the man the raise he voted for, pass the recreational drugs, let the dealer that supplied them out on “conditions,” and I wonder if the “public sexual activity” was supplied by prostitutes he wants to make legal?

    I also wonder if the Vermont State Police investigation will result in any charges with a death resulting? That seems to be the case often at private parties where an overdoes overdose death takes place.

  10. Witches and warlocks bringing people into large gatherings (how many have died at concerts or events?) and conjuring demonic spirits in the name of entertainment. The bread and circuses are set up for the harvest of souls. Many do not believe evil exists or is even real. All Satan needs is a void to occur inside a human heart/soul/spirit to fill it with demonic control. Why do they blatantly challenge and remove God from institutions, goverment, infiltrate and control churches, malign and ridicule believers in Jesus Christ? The great awakening is when the majority realizes the level of pure evil in play, who is involved, and the group is a well established, well funded, multi-generational cult and controlled army. Isaiah 54:17 No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.

  11. Kirk White is a Wicca pagan cult leader. Apparently, he is listed as one of the ’25 Most Influential Pagans’. Google Wicca. White also holds positions in the organizations of the Freemasons, Knights Templar, Rosicrucians, and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

    No problem. Freedom of religion comes into play. As one with libertarian sensibilities, I say to each his own… as long as there is no resulting harm done.

    Curiously, the Knights Templar were among the most skilled fighting units of the Crusades. Some might characterize the Knights Templar as a ‘militia’. A paradox? Go figure.

    But more importantly, I wonder if the survivors, who received and over-dosed on drugs at this event, will consider suing Mr. White. Surely, if the drugs were taken in relation to the religious ‘celebration’, much the same way communion, for example, is administered in the Episcopalian and Catholic churches (wafers and wine/grape juice), and the death and injuries are the result of the celebration, some liability must be assumed by the religious organization and the property (i.e., church) owner.

  12. Imagine what the left would do if some Republican legislator had a “spiritual” drug-fueled sex party (albeit with a veneer of “art projects,”) in the woods on his property and some guy died of an OD. 😄

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