Sacred Ananda Retreat

At Ananda Ashram, Monroe, NY

Friday September 21st - Monday September 24th, 2018

Open to all! You need not be a Forever Yoga Member to join us!

With great joy we invite you to experience one of Jessica's "spiritual homes"!

Experience Ashram Life without the plane ticket to India! Forever Yoga instructors Jessica M. Lang Wright and Cassandra Sullivan are pleased to offer this sacred experience for those interested in going beyond the physical practice of yoga. Participants will travel to beautiful Ananda Ashram in Monroe, NY for an extended weekend of immersion into the science and discipline of yoga and spiritual practice. You will have the opportunity to experience the essential aspects of ashram life including daily yoga and meditation, Vedic fire ceremony, sacred text studies, Sanskrit language classes, beautiful indoor and outdoor settings, calm surroundings, nourishing meals, like-minded company and so much more. In addition to the wholesome morning ashram program to set your day, Forever Yoga instructors and special guest instructor Sheryl Edsall will address topics of interest in the afternoons and evenings with lectures and spiritual discourse to inspire and enlighten. You will leave this time of sanctuary with a deeper understanding of how the teachings of yoga can expand and enhance your life on a daily basis.

About Ananda Ashram

   The ashram entrance.

The ashram entrance.

Ananda Ashram in Monroe, New York, is a Yoga retreat and spiritual-educational center just over one hour from New York City, founded in 1964 by Shri Brahmananda Sarasvati (then Ramamurti S. Mishra, M.D.) as the country center of the Yoga Society of New York, Inc.

Located in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains, the Ashram provides a serene, natural environment with woods and meadows surrounding a lake. Accommodations are simple. Meals at the ashram are lacto-vegetarian and vegan, served three times daily in a variety of cuisines, and incorporate fresh and natural foods wherever possible. In season, much of the produce may be supplied by the Ashram's garden. Water comes directly from spring-fed wells.

   The ashram grounds as seen from the lake.

The ashram grounds as seen from the lake.

Daily offerings include meditation programs with Yoga-Vedanta studies, chanting and readings, and daily yoga and Sanskrit classes. The Ashram is open year-round and welcomes guests from all origins, faiths and cultural backgrounds. The morning program included in the retreat fee offers a gentle yoga class, fire ceremony and meditation, scriptural studies and Sanskrit language instruction, all with ashram teachers (more below in sample schedule).

The Gift Shop and Bookstore carries works by Ashram Founder Shri Brahmananda Sarasvati in print and recorded media as well as a good selection of other books on Yoga-Vedanta and related topics. The audio section has CDs by many of the artists that have performed at the Ashram. The Gift Shop offers a wide variety of products and gift items including Ayurvedic products, essential oils, devotional items such as statues, mālās, meditation shawls, incense, candles and more. Plus there is a "Sweet Treats" and vegan snack section.

Jessica M. Lang Wright headshot.jpg

Jessica M. Lang Wright

ERYT200 is the owner and principle instructor at Forever Yoga in Milford, NH. Jessica received her 200 hour Yoga Alliance Certification in 2010 from Naturally Yoga in Glen Rock, NJ where she studied with Sheryl & Neil Edsall. She also completed certifications in (2011), Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga with Sadie Nardini (2013) and in March 2014 she completed a weekend Yin Yoga teacher training intensive with Josh Summers. Since graduating from her 200 hour program, Jessica has continued to deepen her studies with various workshops with people such as Jason Crandell, Leslie Kaminoff, Manorama, Marc St. Pierre, Karen Kenney, Josh Summers, Ma Bhaskarananda, Jason Crandell and others. In the years since Jessica graduated from her teacher training, she has had the opportunity to work with people of all shapes, sizes, ages and abilities including High School students, the elderly, those with severe health issues and everything in between. Jessica’s classes incorporate careful attention to safety and alignment with the addition of chanting in Sanskrit with the harmonium and a good deal of humor. Read more about Jessica's yoga journey and what people are saying about her classes. 

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Cassandra Sullivan

ERYT200 began practicing yoga while in college in NYC. She loved the feeling of peace and calm she experienced during each class and wanted to share this feeling and her love of yoga with others. She started her 200 hr Vinyasa Yoga teacher training in 2013 at Flor Yoga in Jersey City. Since then, she has completed additional trainings in Yoga for Kids, Yin Yoga, and Restorative Yoga at Pure Yoga in NYC. Read more about Cassandra's yoga journey and what people are saying about her classes.

Special Guest Instructor

We are especially pleased to have Jessica's teacher, Sheryl joining us for a session on Ayurveda during this retreat!

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Sheryl Edsall

ERYT500 was born in 1965 in Portland, OR where she lived on a street named Why Worry Lane. Truly, this was her first invitation to yoga. As a child, she knew she would be a teacher but not until she met yoga in 1996 did she know she would be a devotee of Swami Satchidananda and open the most beautiful yoga studio, Naturally Yoga in 2001 and teach this most sacred gift.

Sheryl is a student of Sanskrit and chants with her blessed teachers Shri Brahmananda Saraswati, Manorama, and Ma Bhaskarananda as her blessed guides. She has been guided to study with some of the most exquisite teachers of asana, energy healing, and devotional practice. She is a teacher of Kundalini Yoga in the tradition of Yogi Bhajan with training from Gurumukh, Lea Kramer and the beautiful souls of the global kundalini community where we know "it takes a village to raise a spirit and we need each other."

Sheryl, her husband Neil, and her children, Josh and Shanna, have been vegetarians for over two decades devoted to animal rights and healthy eating. They opened Nectar Café in 2012 helping others eat delicious food that hurts no animals and is healing for the body. Sheryl has her 500 master’s certification in Ayurveda with her main focus on digestion and nutrition.

Sheryl is a reiki master, an all-faiths minister, a musician, a writer, a mother and a grandmother, and most importantly a lover of love. We come from love, we return to love and in between, of course there’s love!

Retreat Details

Retreat includes the regular ashram morning program with the ashram's outstanding faculty. You'll have the opportunity to practice asana, experience the divine grace of the Vedic fire ceremony and meditation, learn more about the sacred texts of yoga and dive into some Sanskrit as you wish. During the afternoons and evenings retreat teachers will help widen your knowledge of the aspects of yoga outside of the physical practice with topics such as creating sacred space, integrating the teachings of yoga into your daily life, Ayurveda, a Restorative Yoga experience and more based on participant interest. We encourage you to let us know at the time of sign up if there are topics you'd like to see addressed and will do our best to provide programs based on overall group interest making this a "customized" retreat.

Sample Schedule (subject to change)

If you would like to have meals with the retreat group you are strongly encouraged to arrive at the start of lunch and dinner.


Arrive  and check in by 3:00pm.

4:00-5:00pm - Opening All Levels Vinyasa Yoga session with Jessica. Coming together as a group, relieving our bodies from travel and setting our intentions for our experience.

5:30-6:30pm - Dinner as a group

7:00-9:00pm - Opening retreat program session with Jessica and Cassandra.


Breakfast is available 8-9am. The regular ashram morning program is included in your retreat fee and you are encouraged to participate as much as you'd like.

7:00-8:15am - Gentle Yoga (with Ashram Teachers)

8:15-9:00am - Breakfast

9:00am - Meditation & Fire Ceremony (with Ashram Teachers)

9:45am - Yoga-Vedanta Studies, Chanting (with Ashram Teachers)

11:00am - Open Sanskrit Class (with Ashram Teachers)

12:30-1:30pm - Lunch

2:00-5:00pm - Retreat program sessions with Jessica and Cassandra (possible options may include Mindful Hike & Walking Meditation (weather permitting), Creating Sacred Space, The Chakras and Energy, etc. based on participant feedback at signup).

5:30-6:30pm - Dinner (you may wish to eat lightly)

7:30-9:30pm - Restorative Yoga Class with Cassandra


Breakfast is available 8:00-9:00am. The regular ashram morning program is included in your retreat fee and you are encouraged to participate as much as you'd like.

7:00-8:15am - Gentle Yoga (with Ashram Teachers)

8:15am-9:00am - Breakfast

9:00am - Meditation & Fire Ceremony (with Ashram Teachers)

9:45am - Yoga-Vedanta Studies, Chanting (with Ashram Teachers)

11:00am Open Sanskrit Class (with Ashram Teachers)

12:30-1:30pm Lunch

2:00-5:00pm -Yoga and Ayurveda with special guest teacher Sheryl Edsall

5:15-6:15pm - Dinner

7:00-9:00pm - Retreat program session with Jessica. "Yoga in Daily Life: The Yamas and Niyamas."


   Fall at the Ashram.

Fall at the Ashram.

Breakfast is available 8:00-9:00am. The regular ashram morning program is included in your retreat fee and you are encouraged to participate as much as you'd like. On this day lunch is included in your retreat fee but you are welcome to depart earlier should you need to.

7:00-8:15am - Gentle Yoga (with Ashram Teachers)

8:15-9am - Breakfast

9:00am - Meditation & Fire Ceremony (with Ashram Teachers)

9:45am - Yoga-Vedanta Studies, Chanting (with Ashram Teachers)

11:00am - Open Sanskrit Class (with Ashram Teachers)

11:30-12:30pm - Final gathering as a group to reflect on our experience 

12:30-1:30pm - Lunch

2:00pm - Departure




Accommodations and What to Bring


Ashram accommodations are simple with two single beds per room and some storage for your personal items. There are no single occupancy rooms available. All bathrooms are shared.

Suggested items to bring include comfortable clothing for meditation and yoga or other exercise, warm clothing and firm shoes for outdoors, flashlight, alarm clock, toiletries, notebook and a mat or blanket for outdoor use. You may also wish to bring an extra towel if you require more than one.

Be aware that there may be deer ticks and poison ivy in certain parts of the outdoors, even at the time of our retreat. You may wish to bring appropriate prevention items. 

Some yoga props will be provided but you are encouraged to bring a mat and any other props you might have for utmost comfort.

Please note: Possession or use of alcohol and illegal drugs is prohibited on Ashram property. Do not bring and/or consume nonvegetarian food.

Getting There

Ashram Address: 13 Sapphire Road, Monroe NY       Click Here for a Google Map of the Drive

Travel is not included in the retreat price and you will need to provide your own transportation. The ashram is easily accessible by car and is approximately 4 hours from Milford, NH. It can also be accessed by train from Boston to NYC with a change in NYC to NJ Transit and a short cab ride to the ashram. Visit the ashram website for more details about travel options.


Semi-private option

Pricing includes 3 nights lodging, three daily meals (including Friday dinner and Monday breakfast and lunch), all classes and workshops, and applicable taxes. 

Early Bird Pricing - Before July 15th - First 10 registrants

Double occupancy - $650.00 per person    (Please email us with your roommate requests, if any, after your registration is complete.)

Regular Pricing - After July 15th

Double - $750.00 per person   (Please email us with your roommate requests, if any, after your registration is complete.)

Dormitory option

After double occupancy rooms fill (first 10 registrants) a dormitory option will be available. Dormitories have bunk beds and accommodate up to six people per room. Choice of lower or upper bunk CANNOT be guaranteed.

The following rates apply:

Early Bird Pricing - Before July 15th - $550.00

Regular Pricing - After July 15th - $600.00

This option will become available in the purchasing drop down window below ONLY when available.

Currently enrolled 2018/19 Forever Yoga Teacher Trainees may receive a 10% discount on registration for this retreat. Please speak to Jessica directly to register and receive this special discount.

Cancelation Policy

Please be sure of your commitment to these dates and times when you register.

In the event that Forever Yoga needs to cancel the retreat, all payments will be fully refunded to registrants.

If Registrant cancels by July 1st, 2018, you will be entitled to a 50% refund. If Registrant cancels by August 1st, 2017, you will be entitled to a 25% refund PROVIDED your space can be filled by another participant. Cancellations after September 1st, 2018 result in no refund. Cancellations must be confirmed by email to to receive any refund.