Sybil Temple Reopens for Saturnalia
Vestavia Hills(JM) - After extensive renovations and landscaping, the
historic Temple of Sybil in Vestavia Hills reopened this solstice for
the annual observance of the rites of Saturnalia.
Beginning with a candle-lighting ceremony at the southern edge of the
city, a procession of toga and hoop-skirt-clad revelers ascended the
southern slope of Shades Mountain on the sacred route of Elton B.
Stephens. Along the way, various sacrifices were made in the Temples of
Commerce. A fresh young evergreen was purchased from the Mountain
Scouts Christmas Tree Sale and carried aloft up the long stairway to
the Temple, where it was decorated with silver sigillaria and cerei.
The sacrifice of an ox was carried out by Pizitz Middle School janitor
Caldwell Perkins, the duly-elected Lord of Misrule, dressed in the
mayor's sash and top hat. After raising high the knife, he proclaimed
to the merry crowd, "For how many years shall this festival abide!
Never shall age destroy so holy a day! While the hills of Vestavia
remain and father Jupiter, it shall continue!"
While drunken revelry claimed the City Centers and turned the normal
day-to-day commercial activity on its head, many of Vestavia's social
elite reportedly spent the holiday quietly in their country villas.
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