The Fields of Yogis festival takes over NewBo this weekend

Fields of Yogis

Cedar Rapids’ NewBo District (various locations) — Friday, Aug. 10 – Sunday, Aug. 12

Ben Spellman (a.k.a. Good Vibes) leads a yoga class at the 2017 Fields of Yogis festival. — photo courtesy of Fields of Yogis

This weekend, Cedar Rapids’ NewBo district will play host to artists, musicians, acrobats, psychologists, spiritual leaders, hula-hoopers, dancers and, above all, yogis.

The third Fields of Yogis festival, presented in part by Little Village and its sister publication YogaIowa, will be held at various locations in and around the NewBo City Marketplace from Friday, Aug. 10 to Sunday, Aug. 12. Tickets are still on sale through Little Village Tickets, and range from $225 for a full three-day pass to $55 for a three-hour Friday intensive.

“If we attend the same yoga studio and we get used to our yoga instructor, in and out of the classroom we all tend to get into patterns, routines, habits. Our eyes tend to be a little more open when we attend a yoga festival,” said yoga instructor Beth McClelland. “At a yoga festival we have the expectation of learning something new. … [Fields of Yogis was] the first time I learned so much in a short period of time since my teacher training.”

McClelland is the owner of Heat Yoga in Cedar Rapids (and the newly opened North Liberty Heat Yoga) and has been a sponsor and patron of Fields of Yogis for the last two years. She’s hosting her first event at this year’s festival — titled Finding Your Authentic Power — which will be held in the Cherry Building’s Community Room on Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

Beth McClelland, 2018 Fields of Yogis presenter. — photo courtesy of Beth McClelland

The workshop will focus on developing better communication with oneself and others, including opening the Vishuddha Chakra — or the throat chakra, the center of communication — through breathing exercises.

“My life has changed drastically in the last year, and communication, I’ve found, is what was lacking in my relationships with those close to me,” said McClelland, who recently finished eight months of treatment for Lyme disease. “I decided I wanted to share that with other people … Being aware of your thoughts and emotions so that you can speak your truth.”

McClelland said programs that incorporate mindfulness, breath work, spiritual exercises and more are what make the festival an important part of Iowa’s growing yoga scene.

“Ally [Thompson, Fields of Yogis founder and organizer] does such an amazing job at pulling in presenters. She’s very aware of what’s going on in the national yoga scene and makes sure the festival is well-rounded, so you can have that eye-opening experience that’s more than just physical practice.”

Fields of Yogis 2017

Fields of Yogis 2017 is a two day yoga festival happening this weekend in the New Bohemia District in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Highlights from day one include music by Christopher Raven, intro to acro yoga, chakra stone painting and more. Visit for a complete list of vendors, performers and classes.

Posted by Little Village Mag on Friday, August 11, 2017

Fields of Yogis 2018 highlights

A full schedule can be found at


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Friday, Aug. 10

Festival check-in begins at 8 a.m.

Yoga for the Mind

Led by Betsy Rippentrop
Heart Center (2nd floor CSPS) — 8:30 a.m.

A licensed psychologist and certified yoga teacher, Betsy Rippentrop, Ph.D., will present her scientific and spiritual expertise in a workshop combining lecture, yoga, meditation, breath work, mudras (hand positions), svadhayaya (self-study) and more.

Chakra Awakening: Yoga, Sound & Journaling

Led by Cassandra Justine and Johnny Sweetgrass
Heart Center (2nd floor CSPS) — 1:30 p.m.

She’s a yoga teacher, reiki practitioner and sound healer. He’s a musician and filmmaker. Together, Cassandra Justine and Johnny Sweetgrass will lead an in-depth look at the Chakras with gentle movements, journaling, meditation abd breathing techniques to acoustic guitar and the vibrations of quartz crystal singing bowls.

Participants should bring a yoga mat, journal, pen and at least one blanket and pillow.

Free Community Yoga

Led by Ally Thompson
Main Stage (outside NewBo City Market) — 4:45 p.m.

This hour-long yoga practice is open to Fields of Yogis passholders as well as the larger community. It precedes NewBo City Market’s Rock the Block free concert featuring five-piece jazz fusion group Dr. Z’s Experiment at 6 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 11

Festival check-in begins at 8 a.m.

Intro to Acro

Led by Allie Gonzalez and Allie Geddes
Main Stage (outside NewBo City Market) — 10:50 a.m.

AcroYoga is a yogic trust exercise, requiring a pair to get close and communicate to execute a number of lifted, balanced poses. Bring a partner and any level of experience to this introductory class.

Gonzalez and Geddes will lead another beginner AcroYoga class, Acro Jam, at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at 3:20 p.m. Sunday on the NewBo Main Stage.

Ben “Good VIbes” Spellman. — photo courtesy of Fields of Yogis
Good Vibes

Led by Ben Spellman
Heart Center (2nd floor CSPS) — 10:50 a.m.

Ben “Good Vibes” Spellman lives up to his name as one of the most passionate and compassionate instructors in the Des Moines yoga scene. Having overcome years of personal struggle, in part through yoga, Spellman will bring his authentic energy to Cedar Rapids for feel-good, all-levels yoga class.

Spellman will lead another Good Vibes session Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

Liberating the Body

Led by Stacy Patrice
CSPS Gallery — 3:20 p.m.

Stacy Patrice’s personal journey began growing up Chicago’s Southside, where she witnessed the hurt holding back people’s growth and greatness. “I got anxious and angry, then meditative and compassionate before I got active,” she writes on her website. Still based in Chicago, Patrice offers free workshops, classes, readings, spiritual circles, retreats and more to promote mindfulness and healing.

For Fields of Yogis, the “high priestess of soul healing” will host a dance activation workshop, encouraging participants to focus on movement, expression, release and liberation. No dance experience is required.

Patrice is leading two other sessions: Rewrite. Connect. Reflect at 9 a.m. on Saturday and Soul Healing Somatics at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.

Restore, Renew, Rejuvenate

Led by James Orione
Heart Center (2nd floor CSPS) — 3:20 p.m.

Minneapolis-based instructor of nidra, yin and restorative yoga James Orione will lead this workshop exploring the roots of stress and its negative effects on our physical, mental and emotional states. He will also offer methods of staving off stress through yoga and Ayurveda.

Yogis practice outside NewBo City Market at the 2017 Fields of Yogis festival. — photo courtesy of Fields of Yogis

Sunday, Aug. 12

Festival check-in begins at 8 a.m.

“Start Off Your Sunday Right” Meditation Hike

Led by Maria Dummermuth
Indian Creek Nature Center — 6:30 a.m.

The Fields of Yogis festival will stray off the beaten path, so to speak, with an early-bird, medium-paced hike through the hills and prairies of the Indian Creek Nature Center. Along the way, hikers will be challenged to meditate on the concept of “right” — right for individuals, for society, or if there is even such a thing as “right.”

Participants will need to find their own transportation between Nature Center and NewBo City Market. Maria Dummermuth will go on to lead a session — One Voice, One Instrument, One Mantra — at 9 a.m. in the CSPS conference room.

Yoga and Racial Justice

Led by James Orione
Lodge (3rd floor CSPS) — 10:50 a.m.

Orione will return for this workshop discussing the “chasm between progress and reality” in our current culture; the concept of ahisma, or non-violence; and the samskaras (the ideas, impressions and actions that make up our conditioning) of racism, oppression and injustice. Asanas, pranayama and meditation will help participants receive and deconstruct the topics at hand.

Finding Your Authentic Power

Led by Beth McClelland
Cherry Building (Community Room) — 1:30 p.m.

Information at the top of this article

Paint Pouring

Led by Mega Good Vibes Art
NewBo City Market, Speak Your Truth tent — 1:30 p.m.

Splash some regular, neon or metallic paint onto a canvas to make unique works of art in this workshop. Amateur artists can also learn how to mix and properly pour paint. Materials are provided, and you can take home your work when you’re done!

Space in this workshop is limited and for those aged 14 and up (under 18 need a parent present).

Spreading the Peace to our Next Generation: Sharing Yoga with Children

Led by Molly Schreiber
Conference Room (2nd floor CSPS) — 3:20 p.m.

Dubuque-based child yoga expert Molly Schreiber — founder of Challenge To Change, a program the instructs school teachers, parents and others on how to lead child yoga classes — will lead this kid-focused workshop. Engaging songs, games and breathing exercises will help introduce kids to yoga, meditation and mindfulness.

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