Benita Grimaldi on Starting a Yoga Festival & Building a Community

February 23, 2016

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Benita Grimaldi - Salute The Sun Yoga Festival

Ever dreamt of starting your own Yoga festival? We caught up with Benita Grimaldi who's done just that! Benita's a self described yoga addict who's brought together her love of community, connecting people and of course Yoga into a one day Yoga festival taking place in Melbourne this weekend!

Benita's a powerhouse with a busy schedule, from working at lululemon, to being a part of the Girl Boss movement, to starting her own festival and squeezing in a yoga class most days (sometimes more than once). We caught up with this beauty to hear how Salute the Sun Yoga Festival came about and find out her advice for building community. 

Why did you launch Salute the Sun Yoga Festival?

I am so obsessed with connecting our community! We have such talented individuals doing incredible things with fitness, food, music, wellness etc and I wanted to create a space where we could showcase that!

What’s the most challenging part about starting your own yoga festival?

Perhaps just starting?! Once I started, there were so many learnings and challenges, but I have a clear vision, so that's what keeps me going! Also, councils can be a little challenging! Haha 

As a Festival Director, lululemon Community Builder and Girl Boss it’s safe to say you know communities! What’s your top 5 tips for building an engaged community?

1. Do cool shit.

2. Know the people who are doing the cool shit.

3. Support the people doing cool shit

4. The cool shit is not your competition, but your inspiration.

5. Be kind to yourself!

What’s the most surprising thing that’s happened so far on the Salute the Sun Yoga Festival journey?

People want to support each other! I've had such an overwhelming amount of support during my journey!! The people around me are simply incredible!

 Salute The Sun Yoga Festival

How do you juggle all of your different focuses between lululemon, Salute The Sun Yoga Festival, Yoga and Girl Boss you seem like one busy lady!

I do a lot of brain dumps (scribbling down everything that's on my mind onto paper)
I genuinely love what I do, so I pinch myself that my "days off" involve creating a yoga festival and connecting with my community! 

Describe your ultimate day off…

My ultimate day off will start with an early morning class at f45! I love early morning sweat sessions with friends! Then I'll go for  breakfast in the sun; I'm thinking Pillar of Salt...

Next I'll connect... with lululemon ambassadors, with studio owners, with local businesses, with my friends; check out what they're up to, see where I can support... This might include a flash mob; like Thursday with Morning Gloryville!

I'll then work on my businesses, sitting in the sun, enjoying a delicious home made lunch.

Hopefully my night ends with some kind of event or dinner! And I'll definitely sneak in a yoga class before or after that unless I'm going to touch footy (but I'd probably try to get to yoga too!)! I love all studios in Melbourne and tend to lean towards practicing a hot power flow vinyasa!

Favourite yoga pose and why?

Hmm... I love all arm balances! I'm actually a bit of a scaredy cat... So this is as far as I go in terms of adrenalin filled activities! I love seeing my process and seeing how strong our bodies can be! Arm balances allows me to track that!

If you could give one piece of advice to someone wanting to start their own health event or business what would it be?

Just start. It will never be perfect, but if you just start, you can ask for feedback along the way and work it out as you go! The scariest part is believing in yourself enough to start something that you believe in!

Salute The Sun Yoga Festival

More about Salute The Sun Yoga Festival. 

Keen to come along to the festival? Head to the website for more details and tickets.

We'll see you there! Team KOJA will be in the market section providing you with nourishment for the day. Come and say hi and try some KOJA! 



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