I was trying to figure out for our Summer Solstice Open Garden how to do a celebration of the occasion. From my meager research I found that traditionally one observes the Summer Solstice by having a bonfire and then jumping over the flame to cleanse oneself spiritually. I did not think this was a "hot" idea. First, due to the obvious fire hazard and safety. Second, because I think that day, like most this time of year in DC, will by hot as Hades. No need to add an open fire to our already boiling heat and humidity. I looked at having tiki torches, rows of candles, or those copper fire-pit bowls. All still gave off actual heat and flame.
Then I went to several community yard sales last Saturday and the answered dropped right into my lap. Appropriately, the day of the sale was sweltering. One of the sellers was a neighbor a couple blocks away, Mark Behme, who had two large flame faces he'd created for Halloween sitting out in his yard to sell. I snagged them both for the bargain price of $10 -- total. They are pictured here. No way could I even buy the materials to make these flaming beauties for that amount nor do I have the talent, time, or patience for it either. Mark is an artist as you can see by his web site and he definitely has talent in spades. Have no idea what I'll do with these rather large decorations (about 4 ft. by 4 ft.) after the event, but I do know they will really set the mood for the occasion that day.