A “blue moon” actually occurs once every two and half years, as a second full moon of the month, occurring in 41 months per every hundred years.
Inspired by that magical lunar occurrence, Rick “Shadow” Werner, or Lord Shadow to the masses, opened the new age metaphysical Wiccan gift store, Once in a Blue Moon. The store offers everything from candles and incense to hand crafted daggers, crystals and specialty literature.
Originally located on Sylvania Avenue near the Westwood Theater, the store is now on Monroe Street (near Jo-Jo’s Original Pizzeria), offering more space for literature, clothing, crystals and jewelry sections than the previous location. The store, which opened about three and half years ago, is familiar to the Wiccan community. Years ago, two of Toledo’s elder witches, Lady Circe and Lady Taliesin, had a store about five doors down called The Boutique of the Unusual.
A growing coven, a growing community
Born and raised in Toledo, Lord Shadow began learning Wicca in the 70s, and earned the title “Lord” 15 years ago, when the presence of the Wiccan community was less pronounced. The Wiccan religion focuses on nature and energy— healers of the Earth.
Influenced and inspired by the city’s head witch, the late Lady Circe, “She was the big thing in Toledo. She was the head of the witches and I asked her if I could start a group called the Northern Spirits Coven of Witches,” reflects Lord Shadow. The coven met at the Collingwood Arts Center, but outgrew the space. Now, the coven meets every Sunday at a space adjacent to Once in a Blue Moon to teach Wicca 101— the different candle colors, the gods and goddesses.
Behind the doors
Lord Shadow explains that the store is “about healing, energy and Wicca.” The most commonly purchased items are pentacles, a protection amulet representing air, fire and water and a star which represents human energy.
Many of the items in the store are handmade, including candles and incense— they also take custom orders for personalized daggers, wands and robes.
An inclusive community, Wiccans heal through the use of nature, utilizing crystals, stones and candle burning. “People come into the store in a saddened state of mind, and we try to help them, sometimes with certain stones to broaden their day or a particular candle to help them become grounded,” says Lady Darkest. Lord Shadow states, “We are healers of the Earth. Trust us, if you were here all day with us you’d be amazed by the number of people we help on a daily basis.”
Learn the ways of the elders
Once in a Blue Moon hosts a weekly meeting of the Northern Spirits Coven of Witches, open to the public, Sunday evenings from 6-9pm. The meetings include classes for each degree within the coven: first degree (neophyte), second degree (Lady or Lord), third degree (the right to openly practice) and fourth degree (Elder). The first four weeks are free, after that there is a fee of $10 per month.
Once in a Blue Moon | 4348 Monroe St.
419-810-1478 | facebook.com/once-in-a-blue-moon