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Shari wandered into her first yoga class seeking to regain just a little of the flexibility she once enjoyed while dancing in college. Something about the practice crept into her heart and quickly took hold. That fateful decision would change her life’s trajectory forever.
Shari went on to complete her 500-hour yoga teacher certification as well as a variety of specialty trainings, learning from some of the best instructors in the world. Today, backed by more than two decades of experience in the fitness industry, Shari’s talent lies in crafting creative classes, suited to a variety of populations and levels.
“Intelligent sequencing, a strong connection to the breath, and a focus on alignment are all extremely important to me,” she reports. “But beyond that, I enjoy bringing students to the edge of what they previously thought possible. Right there, in the middle of that uncertain grey area, lies the potential for true growth.”
In addition to her expertise as a group instructor, Shari is sought after by private clients as well as teachers seeking mentorship along their career paths. She has developed and led a variety of workshops and retreats and is a certified Reiki Master and Seraphim Blueprint energy healer.
Melanie MacNeil is a certified Yoga, Mindfulness, and Hoopdance teacher and is currently enrolled in East Tennessee State University earning her master’s degree in Social Work. She specializes in mental health and enjoys working with women, children, and families. She has 20 years of experience teaching Yoga and Hoopdance to humans of all ages and brings a playful and down to earth energy to her classes. She operates a small, wellness-based, business called AshevilleHoops.com and brings her handmade hoops to events all throughout the WNC region. She is a resident of Hendersonville, NC, and lives in a cute little mountain chalet with her husband, George, her 2 energetic boys, as well her dog, Foxy, and cat, Frankie. In her spare time, she loves to attend music festivals, make art, and take nature walks.
While growing up and going to college in Charleston, SC, Evan found his passion working with groups as a peer-facilitator for undergraduate students. After college, he lived and worked in Guatemala as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Maternal and Child Health program. There, he continued leading groups with a focus on health education in a multi-cultural context.
After returning from Guatemala, he completed a 2-year comprehensive training in Hakomi – a method of healing that incorporates mindfulness, body awareness, and psychological understanding. In California, Evan joined and co-facilitated Fire Tenders men’s groups. This experience has inspired him to cultivate a similar space for men here to authentically connect, challenge, and grow with one another. He is currently completing his master’s in counseling at Pacifica Graduate Institute.
Recently, Evan was called to move to the Blue Ridge Mountains after living in Oregon and California for 5 years. He is passionate about cultivating meaningful and authentic community in the mountains he calls home.
Evan sees himself as a guide and healer. He combines his experience from Hakomi, depth psychology, and shamanic healing – tailoring it to respond to each client’s needs. Evan works with individuals, families, and groups offering individual sessions as well as group consultations and intensives. His focus includes inner work, conflict tolerance/transformation, integration of psychology and spirituality, family and group dynamics, and dream-work.
Evan brings his awareness, presence, and capacity to hold sacred space into each session.
He views this work as both an honor and privilege.
Evan acknowledges and draws strength from knowing he did not get here alone. He feels the support of his family, friends, ancestors, and mentors (in this realm and others) and sends gratitude for them and their being.
Michelle Finch, senior Yin teacher & assistant to Paul & Suzee Grilley (founders of Yin Yoga) is based out of Indianapolis, IN. She believes in the power of a well-rounded yoga practice. Michelle genuinely embraces the notion that an open heart & mind coupled with the alignment of body & breath can be profoundly healing to the mind, body & spirit of every practitioner. When attending her workshops or teacher training courses, you will find the experience to be powerful & moving for the entirety of your being. Her lighthearted, yet nurturing approach to teaching is guaranteed to elevate your spirit & place a lasting smile on your face.
Michelle was first introduced to the practice of yoga in 2003 while attending Nikki
Myers’ college-level course. Although it took eight years for these teachings to truly
sink in for her, looking back she can see this foundation, laid in her early 20’s, provided the stepping off point for her to realize the multitude of benefits yoga offers, both on & off the mat. Having personally felt its healing qualities, the rounded practice of yoga has aided Michelle in relieving her disease of anxiety & depression, as well as overcoming a personal battle with addiction. After nearly 10 years in corporate human resources, she found herself being called away from the business world & in 2012 made the decision to re-dedicate her life to the path of yoga & has not looked back.
Michelle is a dedicated student of Yin Yoga as well as the teachings of meditation, yoga philosophy & anatomy. She has devoted herself to absorbing the vast amount of knowledge from her many master teachers over the years. As a registered yoga teacher at the ERYT-500 hour level, she has completed over 2,500 hours of training in various forms of yoga asana (yin & yang), philosophy, mediation & anatomy with a variety of esteemed teachers. It is her life’s passion to share this openly knowledge in all of her workshops & training courses.
When not teaching, Michelle spends her time outdoors (cycling, hiking, kayaking, etc.), traveling, enjoying time with her friends/family & sharing the beautiful journey of life with her husband, DJ & three fur babies, Arya, Yori & Dobby.
As an Intuitive Reader, Animal Communicator, and Vibrational Healer, I delight in teaching and empowering people to understand and trust their intuition. With over 30 years’ experience, I blend intuitive insights and telepathic skills with transformative distance energy work to help people, and their pet friends, gain insight, restore clarity, and experience peace.
TARA (BECKY) ESCHENROEDER— A 500 HOUR E-RYT, 200 HOUR E-RYT, RCYT, YACEP, CERTIFIED COACH AND MENTOR, AND SELF-PUBLISHED AUTHOR —IS AN ACCOMPLISHED YOGI WHO WAS VOTED AS ONE OF THE TOP THREE YOGA INSTRUCTORS BY RICHMOND MAGAZINE
With some teachers, the lessons are planned. They are practiced. They are rehearsed. And they are perfected to a tee. But Tara Eschenroeder offers a different experience. Teaching was Tara’s Dharma long before she realized it. She grew up with a bow and arrow in her hands, learning to pull back with just enough aim and control to send her arrow into the abyss, knowing and trusting it would hit its intended mark. And so she enters each class, each workshop, each lesson.. Having prepared her body and mind to become that bow - that vessel - that let’s her lesson…letting that arrow fly... Weaving its way into the provided space and landing wherever it is intended.
Tara felt that call in 2007 when she first felt the spark of a tiny flame. And instead of approaching that flame fearing the heat, she chose to approach it with love, stoking the fire that was burning within for her passion of yoga. By the end of 2009, she received her 200 hour RYT under Arlene Bjork and Grace Yoga Training Systems. She continued to follow what she knew and trusted her path to be, and she obtained her 500 hour RYT through Om On Yoga under the guidance and wisdom of Jennifer Elliott.
When practicing with Tara, no two classes or workshops are ever the same. Students are not told what to do, they are empowered to listen to their own bodies. And while there are general cues throughout of “warrior” and “downward dog” (almost always accompanied by their Sanskrit name), one is also just as likely to hear cues of “listen to the animal within,” “move through honey, “ride the wave of your breath,” or, simply, just an encouragement to “dance.” Her mentoring and life coaching sessions follow a similar pattern. Mentees are not told what to do but instead empowered to listen within with offered guidance- never forced, and always an open-minded invitation to explore. Tara’s Psychology degree from James Madison University, Elementary Education License from Mary Baldwin College, and coaching certification from Yoga2Life give her a studied foundation for helping others, but it’s her natural instincts and open heart that help students see the best in themselves.
Asheville, NC is Tara’s hOMe, and she spends much of her time around the country and outside of holding workshops, retreats, classes, and presenting at festivals. She has also received additional teaching credentials with Project Yoga Richmond and YoKid Stretch Your Limits, as well as serving as a proud Ambassador for Lululemon Athletica. Yet, so much of her teaching is done off of the yoga mat. Tara openly and outwardly lives the teachings has been inspired to share. Just as she would encourage a student falling out of a pose to take themselves lightly, she does the same as she navigates through challenges. And just as she would encourage a student to trust themselves as they spread their wings into something new on the mat, she is a living example of trusting what she knew was her calling as she spread her own wings. She approaches life with that same love that she used to approach that initial flame, and she encourages each person with whom is comes in contact to do the same. And by doing so, she is living out her truth and her drishti of being a vessel of blessing.
Ann Douglas Pinckney is an artist based in the mountains of Western North
Carolina. She is an adventurous, creative soul classically trained in Photography,
Jewelry Design and Mixed Media Collage. As a young student, she began her
advance studies in visual art after being accepted into The Fine Arts Center in
Greenville, SC. From there, she went on to receive her Bachelor of Fine Arts
degree at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. As a professional artist, she has
taught classes at the Greenville County Art Museum and within the school systems
there. Additionally, her work has been displayed in numerous galleries and shows in
both South Carolina and North Carolina. Ann Douglas’s designs are inspired by
traditional motifs from a variety of the beautiful cultures and elements of the natural world surrounding her. She focuses on creating balance in her work, combining classical techniques and modern aesthetics to create pieces that are both artful and wearable. Her signature style celebrates the connection between the classical and contemporary. Ann Douglas’s passion for creating allows her to explore multiple forms of artmaking, giving her a unique and open-minded outlook. She believes that art has the power to evoke emotions, provoke thought and promote empathy while revealing the extraordinary within the ordinary.
Ann Douglas Art & Design