Raven Star Coven is part of the Blue Star Wicca tradition.
In the fall of 1991, Raven Star Grove started as a study group in New Jersey at the same time that Nova Grove was many members strong. Two of Nova's members were Beth and Bill. When they were initiated in December 1991, Kenny and Tzipora asked them to be the local initiates supporting Raven Star. For at least a year they drove from New York City to New Jersey where they served as Priest and Priestess. By the end of 1992 the membership had changed and the Grove began meeting at their home in New York City. At least two of the original members of the grove went on to become thirds and start their own coven (but that's their story).
In the spring of 1992, Beth and Bill began to study with Lord Odin and Lady Lucina of Crystal Blue Star Coven in Queens. They continued to lead Raven Star Grove while simultaneously attending Crystal Blue Star circles. Members of Raven Star often attended both circles, fertilizing the practices of Raven Star further. In April, 1995 Beth and Bill were elevated to the 3rd degree in Blue Star by Lord Odin and Lady Lucina.
At the time of the Beth and Bill's 3rd degree, Raven Star Coven was a small group that had taken the Crystal Blue teachings and the Blue Star teaching "on the road" and created a hybrid. Beth and Bill felt that so long as they and their students understood why certain things were done and why they choose a bit of this and a bit of that, they could get the best of both lineages. They also were firm believers in the Blue Star motto -- "if it doesn't run away fast enough, steal it". Believing in a living tradition that needed to meet the needs of it's members, also kept them always looking for how to use the best of what they had been given from their teachers with what they were experiencing directly in their worship of the Gods.
In the summer of 1995 Beth and Bill moved to Minneapolis. They had wanted to leave the NYC for some time and with a child on the way, it seemed a good time. They were joined in February of 1996 by Wisteria, a member of their coven in NYC and a 1st degree initiate. They held sabbat circles, but did not open the coven immediately. Beltane of 1996 Raven Star Coven formally opened for potential new members, officially hiving from Crystal Blue Star at Litha of the same year. For the next few years the Coven met weekly, celebrating the esbats and sabbats and joining one another in seasonal and social activities. The membership began to grow. Wisteria was elevated to the 3rd degree. Some of the new members were former members of Lake Star Coven, a Minneapolis-based coven that existed prior to their arrival. Some were new to Blue Star. By 2000 Raven Star was 19 members strong. Between spouses and regular guests, the average esbat attendance was 22-24. Sabbats could have as many as 30 people all cozy in Beth and Bill's living room.
While the members of the coven loved one another, they began to feel the strain. Thus at Beltane of 2001 Spiral Gate Coven hived from Raven Star in a deeply felt mitosis. Beth, left Raven Star to form this coven. Bill stayed in Raven Star as its High Priest. Wisteria stayed as its High Priestess. (Contrary to any fears, Beth and Bill remained married and actually strengthened their relationship as a result of the split.) In subsequent years, Raven Star hived Polaris Coven and continued to be a place for new members. The coven currently has 13 members and remains under the leadership of Bill and Wisteria. The members continue to see Blue Star as a spiritual home and regard one another as family. Which is appropriate since all the members of the coven have at least one child. Feasts are loud and chaotic!