Marked by the arrival of Coachella, festival season has officially began. Over the past two weekends your social media feeds have more than likely been filled with the scantily clad, tribal body paint, flower crowns, and what seemed to be endless strobes of neon lighting.
While folks in Indio were probably just settling down from Saturday nights closing sets, early Sunday morning over three thousand yogis found there true North at a different type of festival in San Francisco.
First held in Squaw Valley during the summer of 2009, Wanderlust has expanded it’s three-day festival to other U.S. and international cities as well as kicking off single-day events called Wanderlust 108.
Wanderlust 108, coined as “The World’s Only Mindful Triathlon”, includes a 5K run, group yoga, and guided meditation. Along with other group activities such as hooping, aerial and acroyoga, essential oils and music workshops to participate in after.
I arrived at Golden Gate Park around 7:15am to check in and set up my mat before heading to the pre-run stretch. Over a course of three-waves, groups of attendees crossed the wooden Wanderlust threshold footing through the city’s 1,017 acre park.
After crossing the finish line, I had some time to spare to check out of some of vendors before heading to the mat. Free granola bars, kombucha, cold-press juices, and anything vegan, and gluten-free in between. It was basically like Costco for the 21st century Crunchy Mom.
Our two-part group yoga class began at 9:45am. The massive crowd flowed through series of chatarungas, wild things, and warrior poses in unison led by Mary Beth LaRue before switching over to the second instructor, Janet Stone. While the first portion of class, the groundwork, had a very strong sense of individual practice and focus on self, the second portion created a sense of community amongst complete strangers. The majority of the poses were done while being linked to our neighbors, each of our hands placed behind the heart space of those next to us sharing each other’s energy and support and we strived to keep one another up through the most difficult and wobbly moments.
After sweating it out, we soaked it all in with a guided meditation session led by Vinny Ferraro.
I’ve attended quite a few festivals in my heyday, and I must say, this one was an incomparable experience. No hangovers, grogginess, dehydration, swollen ankles, or embarrassment for anything I didn’t even remember posting on Snapchat.
If you’re curious about the mindful festivities, you can check out the remaining cities and dates here. In partnership with , $1.08 of each ticket sale will go towards feeding children in need.