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Nova Wellness and YogaFest arrives in Leesburg in October

Teachers Andrea Boyd and Jeffry Cohen will be on hand at the Nova Wellness and YogaFest in Leesburg the first weekend of October.
From the creator of Farm-to-Fork Loudoun, Miriam Nasuti is bringing the Nova Wellness and YogaFest retreat to Morven Park in Leesburg Oct. 6-8.

Nasuti – who has attended yoga retreats around the country – said the weekend promises to be nothing short of amazing.

“I have been reflecting and seeing my journey as a high-spirited entrepreneur, and am winding down from five years of farm-to-fork. I look at my own teenagers and where they are now - it is an eye-opening experience. I want to step back and do something for the moms and parents who are so busy here. This is my twilight project, and it will be really meaningful, hopefully people will come from all over the area and enjoy it,” Nasuti said.

Nasuti and her team started planning the retreat weekend in April, beginning with a search for the “right location.” After they decided on Morven Park, everything started to fall into place, she said.

“Morven Park is wrapped around nature and it is a historic property. That is what makes this unique. It was very important to find a place in Loudoun that is peaceful,” she said.

Nasuti then reached out to a group of “amazing” yoga practitioners and received a “great response.”

“This will be a beautiful and meaningful program for the community. We are so thrilled about it,” she said.

The three days are structured so people can come for the weekend, a day, or even a few hours. “We encourage you to pick and choose, but come and relax,” she said.

She emphasized the event is for all levels of yoga practitioners, and there will be all types of yoga. The program offers concurrent yoga and workshops, as well as live music each evening.

There will also be an area called “harmony row and wellness way” which will offer wellness products, reiki sessions, a psychic, astrology reader, and an herbalist.

Dr. Suzanne Nixon of Inspirational Journeys in Leesburg will be offering a meditation and centering experience, to help people come to a place of center and calm and to open your body.

“Meditation is a more sedentary process, connecting within and restoring energy and calmness. This is wonderful for Loudoun County. It is a wonderful way to come together in a healthy way. We are a stressed-out community and we need this. I am hoping it will stir a movement to focus on healthy practices,” Nixon said.

Yoga instructor Anthony Gonzales, a graduate of Loudoun Valley High School, will be offering a workshop called “LGBT and Youth,” as well as a yoga class, “Moving to Stillness.”

Gonzales said his own journey with yoga has been life-changing. After going through a difficult time personally, he was feeling lost and wondering what to do next. He looked up from his car and saw a sign for a yoga studio offering classes at $30 for 30 days. 

He walked in and started taking classes, and that is where it all began, he said.

“It was an emotional experience. It all resonated with me in a very personal way and it was just what I needed,” he said.

Gonzales started looking at yoga teacher training and found an affordable two-week session and signed up.

“It was life changing. It put everything into perspective and gave me permission to be with myself. I fell in love with meditation and breathing. I went back to work and resigned and yoga gave me the strength to pursue what was important to me in my life. Yoga saved my life,” Gonzales said.

Gonzales said he hopes the retreat will open the door for a lot of people to take that step and give back to themselves.

“We are constantly pulled in directions and you cannot put a price on this,” he said.

“My workshop, 'LGBT and Youth,' is a conversation that is not prevalent in Loudoun and needs to be. I struggled with my own identity at Loudoun Valley, and it is important to offer that support and space. You are not alone -- and while it may seem like a struggle now, it will get better. I hope this will make a larger-scale impact,” he added.

Food tent

Nasuti said another important part of the experience is the food tent, where she hopes people will enjoy talking and sharing the camaraderie of the weekend. They have selected Chef Matthew Warschaw, executive chef and owner of Pure Perfection Catering, for the weekend.

“I met Matt while he was providing complimentary tastings at an event to benefit Loudoun Abused Women's Shelter at Breaux Vineyards. I was struck by his friendly style and great, tasty food,” Nasuti said.


Warschaw regularly sources from small, family-owned farms, and will be providing a menu of fresh, organic, plant-based and healthy fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Glamping

Glamping – camping with glamour - is “a must” – Nasuti explains. “It is an important part of the experience and we scheduled this in early fall which makes it absolutely perfect.”

Provided by Solid Ground Shelters in Richmond, glamping will be at Camp Highroad, a short 15 minute drive southbound down Rt. 15. The European-inspired shelter includes either two single beds or a double bed, side table, chairs, luxurious rugs, and more.

“It's just beautiful,” Nasuti said.

For more information and to register for the weekend, visit http://www.novawellnessyogafestretreat.com.

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