Summer 2024

By Pycella Woodberry

Here is the summer issue of the Shire Forecast. In this seasonal publication, you can read about the weather, latest news, and the events hobbits might be interested in.

Changeable weather confuses the Mayor and others

The summer has arrived in the Shire with very unstable weather. Some weeks might be scorching hot, while other weeks provide lots of rain and chilly temperatures. The gardeners and farmers have tried their best to adapt to these weather changes to protect their delicate plants and crops. The rapid shifts have also caused some confusion among hobbits, most notably our Mayor Whitfoot. One would think that we are in the middle of the busiest midsummer wedding season, but Mayor Whitfoot has announced that it is time to celebrate Yule again. The chilly weeks might have made him crave for some Yule cake and other goodies. Yule songs (that “you have never heard before”) have been played at gatherings and snowballs have been thrown at bounders. The weather gammers have shaken their heads like weathervanes and declared that this madness should end soon. We might soon return back to a more stable summer weather, with warm to hot temperatures and some rain showers every now and then.


Thanks to the rainy weeks, this summer should bring a good catch for the fishing hobbits. The water levels are high, and the moist soil is squirming with big worms. However, here’s the catch: also the weeds are thriving, and the recent Green Dragon anniversary fireworks show near Bywater has filled the local pond with remains of dragon, ram and eagle fireworks. Cleaning up the waters is always a good deed, though, and if the fish don’t bite, you can always find a consolation prize at your closest inn.

Summer is the time for some catfish action

Sales boost at the hobbit market

Earlier this spring, new May Royals were elected: Queen Tibba and King Hermanniadoc. Both have made a royal presence at the biweekly Michel Delving market. King Hermann has also seized the opportunity to sell many “royal” goods at the market, like Royal Taters. It’s a grand start to their reign. Under the protection of Queen Tibba, the pig population in the Shire is expected to increase both inside and outside the pigsties. The old tradition of May Royals is still very much alive, and it will certainly continue, as at least one lad has already been nominated for next year’s elections.


Also, the pipeweed sales have set new records. There seems to be a new form of leisure: pipeweed duels where the pipeweed smokers blow smoke in different shapes at each other. Fungo’s Fuzzy-leaf pipeweed has been particularly popular, because it is good for blowing arrow-shaped smoke at others. Who knows, maybe the hobbits will use other shapes of pipeweed smokes at these duels, like the scary forms you can make with Dragon’s Breath?


Pawsome start into the summer event season

Things might get a bit lazy during the summer months, but there are some great events if you need a break from your hammock. The Forest of OAKS marked the end of this OAKS season and also celebrated the 10 years of OAKS. For some reason, more oinkers were spotted roaming in the homesteads afterwards. Maybe they were drawn there by some vile oinker songs.

Many folks and animals gathered to celebrate the 10 years of OAKS in Oldfurlong

Animals have also been present at another summer event: the Shortshot Shire Pet Show on 15th June. Folks were invited to enter their pets in four categories: most hatty/catty, most socky, most useful, and most scary. Queen Tibba’s hatty battle-adorned pig with bristles won the hatty category, miss Bilbeto’s pony won the socky category because it had four white socks, miss Penny’s egret, Ivehadafew, won the most useful category for all the fish it had caught, and of course, Miss Lina’s giant pup Tulip won the most scary category. Initially, Tulip was entered in the most useful category, as she is quite self-sufficient in feeding herself in the village of Bramblebury, but the judges decided to draft her to the scary category where she won paws down. Also, Hermann’s chicken Feathers won the best runner-up prize. The event ended with a parade where the proud pets and their owners strolled, oinked, and fluttered to the homestead gates.


There are also other events to attend during the summer months. And as this is the Shire, pies are often involved, in one way or another. The Hobbitry folks are celebrating their 3rd anniversary on 22nd June by the Sootcrest homesteads party tree. There will be some good fun and music. They are also organizing a pie race. You have to provide the prized pie yourself though. And it is probably wise not to eat too much pie just before the race, as it might slow down your pace.


Another event involving pies is the traditional Grand Summer Picnic. This year, it is planned for 30th June. As earlier, hobbits will gather on the top of the Hill and enjoy a grand picnic with music, poetry and other entertainment. The highlight of the picnic is the pie rolling run where the contestants roll down the Hill, run around the party tree and climb back up again to the finish line. Not only the fastest will win – folks are awarded prizes for doing different funny things during the silly race. Some hobbits might already know the legend behind this pie rolling run – according to the story, Lobelia once interrupted a summer picnic on the top of the Hill, causing panic and chaos, and as a result one of the picnic pies rolled down the hill and only stopped when it hit the party tree. Lobelia has not paid any surprise visits to this event in the past years, but the bravest pie rolling contestants have paid her a visit during the race, and some have even dared to fire fizzers in her front yard. The strong apple cider served at the picnic might have something to do with this courage.

It is scary to face Lobelia – even the maker of this drawing opted for being stealthy

Summer days might be lazy, but events tend to pop up as the season goes on. However, weddings seem to be quite rare once again. It is more likely that you will encounter a nasty summer earworm this summer than a wedding banquet. However, there are the usual recurring events – Green Dragon Fridays, biweekly Michel Delving markets, Fed Poets meet-ups, Badgers band rehearsals, and some dog show rehearsals too (there is one training on 20th June at 7:30PM at the Bree-land hobnanigans fields). Keep up to date on all these events by getting your paws on the latest copy of the Bramblebury Gazette.


Enjoy your summer days, be it fishing, reading in the hammock, tasting pies, or chasing the roaming oinkers away from your larder, whatever the weather may be. And when you need some company, just follow the trail of the spilled ale and cider.


((OOC: This is a seasonal publication providing hooks and information on events for hobbit roleplayers on the Laurelin server. If you have anything we could add to the next publication (in this case, the autumn issue), please send a message to pycellawoodberry(a)