Six Years in the Hood

Article Published: Oct. 13, 2011 | Modified: Oct. 15, 2011
Six Years in the Hood

LunaMela will perform kirtan at Neighborhood Yoga’s sixth anniversary celebration Oct. 15.

Photo submitted

Neighborhood Yoga has a mission: Building community through music and yoga one heart at a time.
As of this weekend, that mission’s been under way for six years.

“We started small with only a few teachers and classes,” said Valerie Midgett, owner of the studio, “but now we’ve grown to multiple classes, numerous teachers for all ages and levels, teacher training certifications, international yoga retreats, service trips and a variety of workshops. The classes and teachers are as diverse as the community of which it is a part.”

In gratitude and celebration, Neighborhood Yoga will be host a sixth anniversary celebration Saturday, Oct. 15, with live music, of both original songs and kirtan.

Kirtan is call and response chanting blended with soothing music to calm the mind, open the heart and remind people of their connection to themselves and everything. Its roots go back more than 500 years to India. It is a form of Bhakti yoga (yoga of devotion), and the singing is accompanied by traditional musical instrumentation and rhythmic drumming.

The audience is encouraged to participate by chanting, clapping and dancing. In the fall of 2012, LunaMela will be release a new world-music CD inspired by kirtan, entitled “One Shared Heart.” The album will feature internationally acclaimed guest artists Wah!, Girish, Alvin Young (Sean Johnson and the Wild Lotus Band) and more.

Midgett invites friends, clients and newcomers to join in the celebration. The music starts at 8 p.m., and the cost is just $12. Seating will be on the floor, and Midgett suggests bringing a cushion to sit on. Some chairs will be available to those requiring one.

For a schedule and more information about these events or any other happenings at Neighborhood Yoga, visit or call (828) 265-0377. The studio is located just behind 212 N. Water St., one and a half blocks north of King Street Shanti Way. Additional parking is available on Queen Street or the corner of Queen and Water streets.

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