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Nutmeg “Nuggets”


Get Your Asana in the Street Om Street on July 22nd


One of the things that makes OM Street unique is the collaborative involvement of yoga studios throughout Connecticut. Barbara and her WHY staff have made concerted efforts to invite and include as many area studios as wish to participate, resulting in upwards of 50 studio owners making the trek to West Hartford. Jen Leavitt, former studio manager of WHY, participated behind the scenes for four years and is still the director of the annual OM Street event. Thrilled to watch studios and students come back year after year, she notes how rare it is to see people come together, “with no agenda, with no motive whatsoever but to connect, move, and be a part of something bigger than yourself. This energy feeds on itself and ripples outward. I hear studio owners talk about how excited they are to promote their businesses and how much they like par- ticipating in an event with their students outside their studio’s four walls. It’s wonderful to see.”


“There is just something about doing yoga and having the view of the sky over LaSalle….”


C


ommunity is a sense of belonging that springs from feel- ing as if other people accept you as you are. Combine that with a collective sense of peace, joy, and unity and you can


imagine what it’s like to practice yoga outside on LaSalle Road in West Hartford at an annual event called OM Street.


OM Street began in 2011 as a collaboration between Lululemon and West Hartford Yoga (WHY). It was a simple premise… gather people from surrounding towns for a free outdoor yoga class. Bar- bara Ruzansky, owner of West Hartford Yoga and OM Street’s class leader, had high expectations and imagined that the event would draw a crowd of 500. Not only were her expectations met, but a new tradition had blossomed. The second year of yoga on LaSalle, dubbed OM Street and paired with the quippy tagline, “Get your asana in the street!”, brought several hundred more yogis, a better sound system (expertly run by one of WHY’s instructors, Jude Rus- sell), and live music from a local band, Cosmic Hue. Excitement had grown over the yoga-in-the-street event and fi rst-year partici- pants brought friends and family to share in the enthusiasm of the 75-minute fl ow.


Over the next few years, OM Street seemed to be blessed by the weather gods. Although occasionally a little humid, the class al- ways seemed to be canopied by blue skies and fl uffy clouds. The great weather and the wonderful enthusiasm of our Connecticut yo- gis have grown OM Street to over 2,000 participants. To accommo- date so many folks, Ms. Ruzansky is supported by dozens of well-trained teachers representing each of the different participating studios. With their expert assistance, help is never far away should you need it. No experience needed to be part of the fun… both beginners and experi- enced yogis can stretch and fl ow to their com- fort level and bask in the energy of togetherness.


Another benefi t of OM Street is how it not only brings exposure to yoga studios throughout Connecticut, but also to local businesses. Shopkeepers open their doors and welcome people in while vari- ous small business owners selling health and wellness products are on hand to greet the energized crowd. As one shop owner on LaSalle put it, “the good energy created by all those people doing yoga together has travelled and spread.”


Now coming into its 7th year, OM Street has organically grown from a whimsical outdoor class to a unifi cation of yoga studios, local businesses, musicians, community participants, and even a non-profi t organization. With such a dynamic and diverse group of people coming together and celebrating their individuality by fl owing in unison, it’s only natural that such a broad celebration would attract an organization whose mission includes bringing yoga to underserved populations. WHY Outreach, the nonprofi t branch of West Hartford Yoga, has brought its own energy to LaSalle since 2015. Anyone stopping by the WHY Outreach table either before or after the event can pick up a list of the free classes they offer, including Yoga for Cancer and Yoga for Recovery.


This year, OM Street will take place on Saturday, July 22 from 8:00am - 9:15am (with a rain date of Saturday, August 12). If you’re ready to bend, sweat, stretch, and smile on LaSalle Road, grab a mat, a towel, and some water and, “get your asana in the street!”


For more information, visit westhartfordyoga.com or the offi cial facebook event page: http://bit.ly/2qB3eiG See ad on page 3.


860.619.2788


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