Elysian Festival brings serenity to Alder Recreation Centre with wellness activities

August 24, 2023   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

It was a very peaceful setting for the Elysian Festival at the Alder Recreation Centre soccer fields in Orangeville on Saturday, Aug. 12, and Sunday, Aug. 13.

“‘Elysian’ means a paradise state of mind,” explained festival organizer Leanne De Palma. “This what we were trying to achieve with the festival.”

This was the first year the two-day festival took place, and around 70 participants arrived from all across the province. The festival included a lot of information and presentations on various topics.

Leanne said she was inspired to create the festival while she was meditating in 2022.

“I’ve been involved in meditation and yoga since I was a teenager,” Leanne explained. “The idea to create the festival came to me when I was meditating. I had the choice to go with the idea or ignore the idea, and I decided to go with it. Every day since May 20, 2022, I kept pushing and working for it to happen. I never had doubts about it. If felt like I was being pulled and pushed to do it, and I was really just the instrument to try to create this thing for people, and it would benefit them.”

The festival was held outdoors at Alder under a large tent in case the weather didn’t cooperate.

“It was held outdoors because I think that to really feel connected you have to feel the earth,” Leanne explained. “Being in an artificial room with artificial air and artificial sun just doesn’t make you feel connected to something. It was a large, tented event, and everybody had yoga mats and you could actually feel the ground when you were meditating.”

Throughout the festival, some guests came to teach about yoga, as well as learning about acupressure points and other related topics about leading a healthier life.

“We were trying to take the different types of disciplines that are out there and put it all into one place,” Leanne said. “Instead of driving all over the GTA to find all these practitioners, we brought them all to one space. It wasn’t just yoga, it’s not just your basic meditation class, you’re getting a collection of different practices in one place.”

There were also lots of vendors on-site with related products and services.

Leanne said she plans on making the festival an annual event.

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