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Newtown Yoga Festival Returning In August

Published: July 31, 2015

Nancy K. Crevier

    The Newtown Yoga Festival returns Saturday, August 22, for a third year of sharing well-being and health through yoga and related positive energy practices.

    The festival takes place at NYA Sports & Fitness Center, 4 Primrose Street within Fairfield Hills, from 9 am to 4 pm. There is a suggested donation of $25 per person (no charge for age 16 and under), and participants are invited to bring their own yoga mats and props.

    “The Newtown Yoga Festival was formed with the intention of being a healing presence for Newtown and the surrounding communities affected by the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012,” according to the website www.newtownyogafestival.com.

    Throughout the morning, participants of all ages will experience the benefits of yoga, beginning with Sun Salutations led by instructor Brian Pontolilo of Sanctuary Power Yoga in Torrington and Charym Yoga in Litchfield, from 9 am to 9:30 am.

    Yogis can then choose from a variety of yoga and dance practices throughout the morning.

    Newtown energy healer and yoga teacher Joanne Keane will take dancers through Journey Dance, a physical and emotional movement practice. Participants can also choose from a selection of other yoga practices and instructors, as well, including Elizabeth Goranson with “Yoga for Children with Special Needs,” intended for youth ages 6 to 17; Agni Chapska,  who will introduce ParaYoga, a teaching that unlocks accomplishment in practice and life; “Yin Yoga” taught by Rob Farella; “Core Strengthening/Power Flow” with Amie Meleshkewich; “Inversions” with Colleen “Lila” Breeckner; or “Magical Mudras & Mantras” with Kundalini Yoga teacher Susan Shaner.

    NYA yoga instructor Kate Petty will offer “Dynamic Vinyasa Flow”; and Chris Smith will lead stretching and postures of  Kundalini Yoga, which combines these with the use of  breath and meditation. 

    Dancers and non-dancers alike are invited to follow the lead of world renowned dance troupe Pilobolus for family fun, from 10:45 to 11:45 am.

    The 2015 Newtown Yoga Festival headline program features a presentation and class led by Drs Patricia Gerbarg and Richard Brown, pioneers in the emerging field of yoga and medicine. Dr Gerbarg and Dr Brown will share yoga tools to cultivate a stress-free life during the Community Yoga Class, from 1 to 3 pm.

    “Back to Balance: Yoga, Meditation and Tools for Cultivating a Stress Free Life’” offers instruction by the award winning authors on their Breath~Body~Mind® practice.

    Close out the day of fun and relaxation with crystal bowl healing and a gong bath lead by Sound Center Founder Jen Zulli of Newtown, who was recently nominated for best vocal album by ZMR Music Awards.

    Food vendors, a Lululemon trunk sale, a silent auction, and live music can be enjoyed in the courtyard at NYA during the festival, and with a YogaBear: Yoga for Youngsters book signing by author Karen Pierce and illustrator Paula Brinkman, both of Newtown.

    Registration information can be found at www.newtownyogafestival.com.