Highlights From Steamboat Movement Fest: Catch It Next Year, Aug 11-13, 2017
The Steamboat Movement Fest is an annual inspiring weekend of yoga, music and movement in the gorgeous Rocky Mountains, featuring the likes of Rusty Wells, Mary Clare Sweet, Tyrone Beverly and singer/songwriter, Kevin Paris. In just its second year, co-founder Telaya Thomas said, “This event was built with a lot of heart and a lot of love.” All of that love was shining all over Steamboat the entire festival weekend 2016.
Highlight 1 The kick off: The weekend began with Gina Caputo’s transformative immersion, “Finding your Dharma.” My friend, Jen Rhode, was new to yoga, and she laughed later, admitting that before the class started, she hadn’t even known what dharma was. “It’s about living our lives with inquiry,” Gina told us. “You have to work with the grit. Grit polishes who you are and lets you shine.” We were all inspired after three hours of discussion, contemplation and partner work. “My goal is that you walk out of here curious,” Gina said. “Not that you walk out with ‘the’ answer.” It was a great start to the festival, setting the tone for deep inquiry, joy and meaningful connection.
Highlight 2 The lineup: There were so many amazing instructors at the Steamboat Movement Fest, including Bhakti yogi Rusty Wells, with his great sense of humor, his down-to-earth teaching style and his dance party playlist. Rusty began his morning yoga class by asking us come to the front, where he encouraged us to spread yoga’s message of awakening to those who might not be exposed to it. Rusty himself has moved from San Francisco back to Southern Alabama, not exactly a hot bed of yoga. “It’s important,” he said, “to talk about the benefits of yoga in a way that Aunt Pearl can understand it.” He then led us through a creative asana sequence. “It’s not a workshop,” Rusty said, laughing. “it’s a play-shop.”
Highlight 3 The venues: On Friday night, Jennifer Jarrett led a restorative class in an eclectic art gallery called The Depot. The space was formerly a train station, located right next to the old tracks, a hot springs, and the Yampa River. The room was lit by twinkly lights and there was leftover glitter on the old hardwood floor. Kevin Paris’ live music added blissful accompaniment. All of the venues, in fact, were fantastic, from the beautiful studio space in the Bud Werner Library, right next to The Depot, to the billowing tents set up in the shade of cottonwood trees in West Lincoln Park across the street. Classes were held in nearby studios as well, and everything was easy to get to, within walking or biking distance through Steamboat’s adorable downtown, past smoothie shops, bookstores and Western Wear storefronts.
Highlight 4 The diverse offerings: The Steamboat Movement Festival had something for everyone, from kids’ yoga, craft-making and story-time classes to adult StandUp Paddleboard classes, taught by Lisa Fierer, the lead yoga instructor for Rocky Mountain Paddlboard. There was also a yoga/hiking class on the schedule, and innovative yoga/massage therapeutic classes with dynamic Chicago instructor, Wade Gotwals. All of this in addition to West African drumming and dancing, and a performance Saturday night at the historic Chief Theater by Cloud Kickers International, a grooving fusion of hip hop, reggae and African influences.