Wanderlust Festival: Stratton, Vermont

I believe in the good things comin’... comin’, comin’, comin’’
— Nahko and Medicine for the People

Good things all around. Vibrant, beautiful energy was abundant in the air at Stratton Mountain, Vermont late in June. Wanderlust Festival came to town and I was a part of it this year's Box Office and Guest Services team. 

I spent over 20hrs in 4 days helping people find tickets to bliss, soul music, and heart (& hip) opening workshops. 

Expecting to be wrenched wide open by the energetic revivals and rituals of physical asana practice, I found my feet taking me to places in the mountains. I spent the majority of my time at Wanderlust Stratton on an internal journey to peace of mind and joy of heart, bobbing about with occasional friends, then venturing on, camera in hand, to places beyond the Wanderlust map. 

In the sweet mountain air, I found a visual sense of freedom. Expectations melted. Winter things, unprepared for summer foot traffic, became my subjects and my interests.

Having grown up as part of a ski community on a mountain in Maine, the typography of trail signs and the steepness of the trails were simply nostalgic. I have never spent much time climbing my Maine mountain on foot, but know it by heart on snowboard. Each of its smooth twists and turns and curves feel different at higher speed and lesser friction.

I went on hikes alone, taking in everything and nothing. I attended classes with new teachers that made me laugh, move, and think in new ways. I love the yoga that Maine offers, but the newness and diversity of these workshops struck a chord.

I sat in on the Press Conference on Saturday featuring founders, Jeff and Sean, and guest teachers, Sean Corn and Gabby Bernstein. Open to any questions, they were grilled with worried inquiries about the rapid expansion of the Festival and its growth as a company. Would this jeopardize the mission and integrity of the company as expenses and possible revenue presented themselves?

Simply put, I was impressed with the smooth and authentic answers. The purpose of Wanderlust is "to create community around mindful living." To change, to move beyond the distracting elements of the plugged-in generation, and to encourage those who feel lost in technology to wander forward and outward in mind, body, soul, or any combination thereof. 

Perhaps this is why I felt so compelled to hike, to move, to be beyond the carnival of mats and groups seeking exactly that which I was feeling beyond.

Perhaps it was that energy, from those generous participants, that fueled me to wander, to find space, and release the pressure of agenda. 

Thank you, Wanderlust... and the people that made it possible for me to find space to breathe.

Photo thanks to Kelly Casey!

Photo by Kelly Casey! :)

On Friday I was lucky enough to grab the last slot in Ali Kaukas's PhotoFlow Workshop! A gem and an artist, Ali is fun to work with and certainly inspirational to say the least. Her humble attitude was welcoming and encouraging! Thank you, Ali!

All images © 2014 Courtney Elizabeth Media.