Good. A Wellness Fest in Philly, proves to be more then just a one hit wonder. This festival is here to stay!
So a few girls got together and decided they wanted to host a wellness festival with all the health and wellness young professionals they all love. Easy right? Piece of cake! Kidding - definitely not easy but these three gals knew what they would have to do, who they needed to connect with and would have to reach a specific audience and that's exactly what they did. It's also why I went. It was the first wellness festival to be hosted in Philly which is a huge milestone for the Philly area. And it was super fun to hop on a train and go on an adventure.
It was held in Philly which meant I was making a weekend out of it. I was grateful to have a friend from Gabby Bernstein's Spirit Junkie MasterClass, so I stayed with her one night and we went to the festival together. Wellness is so much more fun with a friend! And then I had family in Philly too, so I spent time with them. I saw cousins, aunts and babies. It was great! And I even got up at the butt crack of dawn so I wouldn't miss a moment. ( I am not a morning person )
The invitation said dress comfortably. So I wore jeans. My favorite pants besides Pajamas. Probably the only one, but hey they are my fav. Do you ever notice how most yoga pants give you that diaper look or camel toe? It's why I wore jeans to this event. Never wear jeans to a yoga or pilates event. It stretches the crap out of your jeans, and it gives you a fabric penis. Was not a fan! Ha! But had a blast regardless. It made me realize I had to hop, skip and jump to Lululemon, which I did do the following week. Now I live in yoga pants! Go to Lululemon. They get it!!
Upon arrival it was streamlined perfectly, I thought. I know the group felt it was a bit chaotic in the beginning, but for a first time ever festival - I thought it rocked! We were greeted by the proud moms giving us our bracelets to get in and from there it just flowed.
It's this festival that I found out that Vital Proteins is gluten-free (not the beauty greens, all the other ones). I was super psyched! Vital Proteins is a beef gelatin, beef collagen powder supplement for hair, skin and nails. It is not plant-based or Vegan. But every ingredient they use is of the purest form and carefully sourced.
There was a main room for Yoga, Pilates, lectures and eats, then the back room which held a wellness vendor festival where you could learn, try and buy. Goodies like candles, essential oils, jewels, crystals, body and face beauty, wellness books, cookbooks, acupuncture, and more.
Above here is Darienne of Darienne Empire getting her first try at Acupuncture!
I bought some Himalayan pink salts for the bath for extra healing and a book written by one of the Speakers; Sara DiVello who went from running a corporate law office to becoming a yoga teacher and writing this book: Where in the Om am I. Clearly a book I need to read! It's perfect for anyone in transition and she has Celiac Disease. I knew this book had my name written all over it. After all I'm a former fashion designer turned health coach and Celiac. It's like we are twins!! (kidding, but not really).
Plus some of my favorite brands sponsored this event! Snap Kitchen catered the whole festival which was fantastic because they get gluten-free and they get plant-based. I'm not vegan, but I sure as heck appreciate everything being totally gluten-free and often certified gluten-free. That absolutely rocks in my book to attend a wellness festival that is 100% gluten-free down to the Cayenne pepper, lemon juice by Telula I drank, down to the dried fruit snacks by Made By Nature, and including the main meals. With me and my allergies, I wasn't worried - Kate said they cater to allergies and in my case that was amazing because besides Celiac I have a zillion food issues that Snap Kitchen completely catered to by bringing me a meal that wasn't even being served at the show. Thank you Snap Kitchen you guys rock!
My newest gluten-free fav were these healthier popsicles called Chill Pop. I had the watermelon lime one and it was oh so good. A perfect addition to my day. Currently not sold in NYC yet, but wishing and waiting!
Check out some of the awesome brands that made an appearance at this show:
And I never realized how excited I'd be for a 9 a.m. Pilates class and Yoga class. That's probably because it's not so often that I get to go to a class taught by my favorite Blogger Jordan Younger of The Balanced Blonde.
It's also because there was so much BUZZ around this event because I knew so many of the people speaking, that I HAD to get there on time (which is un usual for me - just being real).
But it's also because Kate Van Horn is one of the Co-Founder's of this amazing, delish festival and she was a friend I met on Instagram! I wanted to be there to support her, so I bought the early bird ticket and got on a train to Philly.
When you find your crew, your tribe, your posse - do everything you can to support them. Shine those loving vibes into the Universe!
Co-Founder Kate Van Horn is a wellness blogger who focuses on dang delish plant-based healthy eats, wellness and ED Recovery. While Kate and I do not share the same illness, we both share a love for healthy plant based eats, good vibes and HEALING. And since healing is a journey that both Kate and I have been on, we connected instantly. Kate's man has Celiac so she get's the whole gluten-free thing which rocks in my book! Kate also writes for Tori Spelling's blog, and well-that's just beyond cool. Who doesn't love Tori? I waited on a 3 hour line to get my book signed by Tori Spelling and snagged a shot with Dean and Tori too way back when Border's was still a book store in Manhattan. Hello, Donna Martin? She's a classic!
In addition to Kate Van Horn, I came to this festival to see my tribe that I have created/manifested in the last four years.
Jordan Younger of The Balanced Blonde was someone I met when she was still The Blonde Vegan. I just loved her blog, her realness, her voice. She is so darn nice too, so down to earth. We met at one of the first events Jordan ever did at Juice Press NYC. This is way back when. This is when she was going to tell her following that she had to switch from a vegan diet to a balanced diet for her health. I remember telling her to shout it to the roof tops, because people needed to hear about her struggles as well as her journey. And I felt that way because I was going through a healing journey myself and I was in the midst of elimination diet hell. I understood what she was going through. It's when we got some one on one time that I really appreciated her work, mission and message. From then on I was sold. And so every time we see each other it's a big hug hello.
Katie Dalebout of Let It Out Podcast / Book / Blog who is formally The Wellness Wonderland was speaking about creativity and body image. Man, I love this girl! I started following her when she was The Wellness Wonderland and her podcast was all about interviewing health, wellness and spiritual life coaches. There are so many podcasts out there, but Katie is the real deal when it comes to inspiration and wellness. She's fun. She's real. And she's only in her 20's - having battled an E.D. and finding her way back to loving herself, she shares her wisdom and tools for battling body image disorders and feeling good again. She infuses her love of creativity and inspiration into these serious topics and makes it MORE about the creative process. She's awesome! I started listening to her podcasts in 2013. It was actually the first podcast I was even interested in listening to! It's how I met Jordan Bach, the most amazing spiritual life coach! Her podcast propelled me into the world of wellness.
Cassandra Bodzak, Spiritual Life Coach and Author of Eat With Intention - a former Holistic Health Coach, Vegan cupcake maker, founder of Go Sweet and Skinny and contestant on The Taste Food Show. I wanted to see her speak because over the past five years she has changed, her business has changed, her mission has been redirected and I wanted to see that direction change with my own eyes. What I can say about Cass and many of us is that trauma changes us. And when we are changed, our mission changes along with it. That's what I see with Cass. Her trauma changed her. It made her see the world very differently and because of that perspective change, she was able to make that change in her work and crossed over from one coaching career to the next. Cass is all about wellness too, but in a more spiritual aspect and I love that because for me spirituality has been a game changer.
Talia from Party In My Plants is a Vlogger, wellness blogger, podcaster and Holistic Health Coach at Party In My Plants. You gotta love Talia the way I do! She's sassy, funny and teaches you how to get more plants into your diet without it sucking A**. Former comedian and writer for SNL - Talia uses her humor in all of her videos, podcast and blog. She's one sassy gal and I love her for it. I started following Talia when I watched her Youtube videos on recipes way back when. She's hilarious! Her recipes are EASY PEASY, delicious and fun and she's fantastic for beginners!!! She has so much sass, you'll be smiling when you leave her blog, podcast and youtube channel. Her instagram is all about being REAL.
There were many other coaches and teachers speaking at Good. While I didn't come to the show to see them, I walked away with so much inspiration from these new wellness ladies:
Now for the SWAG BAG...
The Swag Bag was fierce! I mean fierce! Never have I gone to a festival and been able to eat almost all things in the grab bag. Everything was gluten-free! Many brands were certified gluten-free! So my favs from this swag bag was my all time favorite cream by SW Basics (less then 5 organic ingredients is their jam, but only 3 in this one), Banza chickpea pasta because it rocks, Naturally Bare Snacks Fuji Apple Chips, and the Fawen Drinkable Soups. Anything that contained nuts went to friends. : ) I've been tree-nut & peanut-free since 2014.
What I loved the most about this festival was the drive and passion I saw from the ladies that spoke and the energy at this event. The drive that said "I'm going to follow this path because I belong here no matter what". The passion that says "I love what I do and if people don't get it now they will get it soon, so i'm gonna keep going because I love it". That in itself was so inspiring that it instilled an extra boost of confidence in me and enabled me to move forward too with happiness and delight. It was like the directions you so desperately needed handed right on over to you.
I loved that this festival had a mission to connect all wellness bloggers and wellness professionals together to not only create more community but to create a buzz around wellness.
The next stop for Good. A Wellness Fest is coming to L.A. on February 3rd, 2018 followed by another festival in April 2018 in Philly. You need to be there. So be there or be square. : )