April 3, 2020
Dear friends and students,
As you know, we closed Ashtanga Yoga Northampton on Friday, March 13, with the full intention of opening the studio again in April. As this pandemic spreads and begins to increase in severity, we have come to realize (as I am sure most of you now have, too) that this crisis is far from over. The likelihood is that the national quarantine/lockdown will stretch well into May—perhaps even longer. We regret that our financial situation is such that it is impossible for us to sustain an empty physical practice space for that long.
Thus, we are sharing today, with heavy hearts, that we must close the physical studio permanently.
We started this diverse, wise and compassionate yoga community in 2015 with the intention of creating a different kind of yoga studio led by a profit-sharing collective of teachers of quality and dedication to practice, whose love of yoga and respect for one another spurred them to work together to foster a diverse and inclusive practice space and yoga community. We are proud of our efforts at Ashtanga Yoga Northampton to fulfill this goal, and grateful that we were able to walk this path together—and, especially, with all of you.
As we look back over our years of sharing Ashtanga Yoga and Yin Yoga in the Northampton area, we are humbled by and filled with a deep appreciation for the many strong connections we’ve made. And that is something quite interesting, considering that much of the time we’ve spent together has been in silence! But, it’s those silent moments of peaceful, steady breathing and earnest, intentional movement—moments mixed with challenge and courage, frustration and accomplishment, joy and sorrow, shared laughter and cathartic tears—that shine the brightest in our memory.
These moments, gathered through the years, accruing in our soft-lit, warm and intimate space, were the moments that collectively created the energy of love, compassion, warmth and wellbeing of Ashtanga Yoga Northampton—an energy which spreads out into the world though all of you, our dear community. May the memory and resonance of this energy be with us always.
As for logistics….
AYN will continue to offer daily Zoom classes through May 1, 2020. After May 1, AYN will officially end. Some of our teachers have chosen to step back from teaching for a time, to regroup and gain energy for the months ahead, while others will continue to teach Zoom classes on their own initiative after May 1. We will let you know details of how you can continue to study with these teachers in the coming weeks, but in the meantime, hope you will take virtual classes with us before the end of April—not only as a means to sustain your yoga practice, but to also connect with your teachers and members of the AYN yoga community during what will likely be the most difficult period of the COVID-19 outbreak here in the US.
If you are financially able to do so, outstanding AYN class cards may be used to take daily classes on our online in the next month. But, we understand that financial difficulties may arise for you, and thus have extended our refund request period until Monday, April 6th. If you need a refund, please contact Michelle no later than 9am Monday April 6 to initiate the process.
For those who may still have yoga mats in our studio, we very much wish to get these back to you, and will be holding open hours for you to come to the studio to pick them up next week. We ask that students do not come if they have any symptoms of any kind; please send a healthy proxy who has not been in contact with you, but who can get your mat safely for you. If you cannot get your mat during any of these times, please contact Michelle to arrange an alternative.
All mats that are not picked up or spoken for by April 9, 2020 will be donated to the Northampton Goodwill.
Open Mat Pick up Times:
Monday April 6 ~ 11am-12pm Anastasia
Tuesday April 7 ~ 11am-12pm Anne
Wednesday April 8 ~ 6-7pm Bob
Thursday April 9 ~ 3-4pm Georgiann
In closing, thank you—all of you—for being a part of this wonderful group of souls. Thank you for helping us build a beautiful yoga community of wise, wonderful, compassionate, caring individuals. It has been one of the greatest privileges of our lives to be able to serve you.
May you and yours be well, stay healthy, stay strong,
and please stay in touch.
Georgiann Kristek, Anastasia Ezequelle, Robert Shea, Anne McCabe,
along with our very first collective teachers, Anna Bourgeault, Alicia Hunter, Meghan McAuliffe,
and Michelle Ryan