Category Archives: CULTURE + HAPPENINGS

WANDERLUST: The World’s Only “Mindful Triathlon” Returns to Los Angeles

April 11, 2018

 On Your Mat, Get Set, Flow!
April 28 and April 29, 2018


Wanderlust, producer of the largest yoga lifestyle events in the world, in partnership with adidas, brings Wanderlust 108, the world’s only mindful triathlon, back to Los Angeles on both Saturday April 28, and Sunday, April 29, 2018.

Coming to the iconic Santa Monica Pier, Wanderlust’s unique triathlon consists of a five-kilometer run (or walk), a music-fueled, outdoor yoga class and a guided meditation. Mindful triathletes can also browse the marketplace of local craft and food vendors, and experience bonus fitness classes throughout the day.

Saturday’s lineup includes yoga from Chelsey Korus, meditation from Noah Levine, with tunes spun by DJ Drez.

Sunday’s lineup includes yoga from Mary Beth LaRue, meditation from Light Watkins with sweet beats provided by Jesse Blake.

For the complete lineup and ticketing information, please visit:

For the SATURDAY Wanderlust 108:

For the SUNDAY Wanderlust 108:

New for 2018, participants in North America will be able to choose from an array of premium ticket options to create their perfect Wanderlust 108 adventure. Ticket prices starting at $30 with premium packages from $99. Attendees can customize their experience via the tiers below:

WAN(DER)LUST Package: $150

Wanderlust has joined (RED) in the fight to end AIDS.

  • 50 tickets will be available
  • Attendees will receive a Manduka WAN(DER)LUST mat, Wanderlust 108 tote, WAN(DER)LUST water bottle, and Wanderlust fandana.
  • Entry to the entire mindful triathlon: 5K run + yoga + meditation
  • Premium mat placement for the yoga and mediation portions of the event.
  • A scheduled bonus activity: Attendees can choose from a variety of experiences: aerial yoga, AcroYoga, hooping—and new this year—Flying Therapeutics, which is a combination of AcroYoga and Thai Massage, or Body Work, which is deep-tissue, self-massage techniques which can assist in releasing pain, opening locked muscles and facilitating proper posture. Participants will be able to add this to their day’s agenda pre-event.
  • A Wanderbowl will be included as well—a hearty, Mexican inspired vegetarian (or vegan) meal of rice, beans, cheese, avocado and mango-lime-cilantro salsa, plus snacks and a beverage. (Wanderbowls are also available for purchase at any ticket tier.)
  • A Free Wanderlust TV class ( ) to continue the Wanderlust experience online at home.

108 Package: $99

  • 200 tickets will be available
  • Wanderlust 108 yoga mat, 108 tote, Wanderlust water bottle and Wanderlust fandana
  • Entry to the entire mindful triathlon: 5K run + yoga + meditation
  • Reserved mat placement
  • Free Wanderlust TV class ( ) to continue the Wanderlust experience at home, online.
  • A scheduled bonus activity: Attendees can choose from a variety of experiences: aerial yoga, AcroYoga, hooping—and new this year—Flying Therapeutics, which is a combination of AcroYoga and Thai Massage, or Body Work, which is deep-tissue, self-massage techniques which can assist in releasing pain, opening locked muscles and facilitating proper posture. Attendees will be able to add this to their day’s agenda pre-event.

108 Ticket: $40-$60

  • Entry to the entire mindful triathlon: 5K run + yoga + meditation
  • Prices will rise as the event date approaches.
  • Wanderlust fandana
  • Access to bonus activities on a drop-in basis, space available.

Practice Ticket: $30-$45

  • Entry to the yoga + meditation portions of the event only
  • Prices will rise as the event date approaches.

At all Wanderlust 108 events, the Kula Marketplace will showcase local craft vendors, including clothing, jewelry, and handcrafted items. Local and organic food vendors will be on site, as well as a retail store experience created by adidas and Wanderlust housed in a 60’ geodesic dome. Items from the adidas x Wanderlust co-branded collection will be sold on site at each event.

At each Wanderlust 108 event in North America, attendees will be nourished by a number of Wanderlust partners, including:

  • adidas will be introducing new experiences to the 5K run and offering additional fitness activities to help attendees embed more sport into their day.
  • Flow is pleased to bring their high-quality, naturally alkaline spring water to the Mindful Triathlon to hydrate participants throughout the day. These events will also be a chance for Wanderlust attendees to taste Flow’s brand new organic flavored water: Cucumber + Mint and Lemon + Ginger in a refreshing environment.
  • Ford Motor Company was built on the belief that freedom of movement drives human progress. Ford is proud to be the Official Vehicle of Wanderlust and to support healthy initiatives inside, and outside, the company. Event attendees can stop by the Ford Zen Den to learn more about the sustainable practices and wellness programs at Ford, and of course, take home some incredible giveaways.
  • Rainier Fruit is a leading grower of both conventional and organic apples, pears and cherries. As a fourth generation family farm we are committed to the mission of living Wholesome to the Core. A partnership with Wanderlust allows us to share our delicious fruits with like-minded consumers who are choosing to fuel their active lifestyles with high quality food like our organic apples. We are excited to meet yoga enthusiasts from around the country and help them get to know Rainier Fruit through our on-site sampling and our sponsorship of the Wanderlust Walking Lunch.

In 2018, Wanderlust will donate $1.08 from every ticket sold to The Global Fund to Fight AIDS with (RED), which could provide over 3 days of life-saving HIV medication. To date, (RED) has generated more than $500 million for the AIDS fight, supporting HIV/AIDS programs and services in eight countries in Africa. 100% of money raised goes to work on the ground—no overhead is taken. For more information, visit

Become a fan of Wanderlust at


All Photos by Melissa Gayle for Wanderlust Festival

WITMA || MARCH 24TH, 2018 || LA EDITION – Get Tix Now!

March 18, 2018

One week countdown to WITMA!

and you need to get your tickets now and meet me there!


Inspired, real talk with forward thinkers, connectors and motivators in the world of wellness and all things high-vibe. It’s a gorgeous day of like-minded seekers hungry to elevate, grow, educate, share, change and commune.

The panel is mind-blowing. Not stone of next level movers and shakers left unturned. Just look!

And a special virtual hug to my gorgeous soul sister Natalie Kuhn until I get to see you next week and squeeze you in the flesh.

Come in the morning to the stunning NeueHouse, hunker down and stay for the day.

Tickets here.

The day is affordable (tickets as low at $44) and you can bring your future leaders (KIDS YES PLEASE!) too. How much do I love a high-minded event that is open to our next gen? A ridiculous shit ton.


A bit about the inception:

WITMA was founded in 2017 by Kara Erickson (Intuitive Event Producer),  Anna Lundgaard (Creative Facilitator).

With 300 physical attendees, an average panelist reach of about 1.5 million impressions, a live-stream audience of 90+K, and extensive podcast coverage on numerous channels – WITMA’s foundational event in NYC on September 22nd, 2017 proved to feed a need for more high-vibrational discussion.

A few key words on an iPhone note in the spring of 2017 became the beginning of what WITMA has grown to be.  The founders came together from varied backgrounds and disciplines, in synchronous fashion in 2017 to begin a collective effort of bringing empowerment and accessible, alternative information to like-minded people interested in facilitating the paradigm shift taking place globally – here and now.

James Bland on Giants – YES!

March 1, 2018

We get crazy inspired by people going after their dreams and making shit happen. And that’s exactly why we love James Bland. Read on…

He’s the creative behind Giants, a scripted drama digital series, executive produced by Jussie Smollett (FOX’s “Empire”) and streams via ColorCreative.TV on Issa Rae’s (HBO’s “Insecure”) YouTube Channel. 

Created by and starring James Bland (USA’s upcoming crime series, “Unsolved”), alongside Vanessa Baden Kelly (“Kenan & Kel,” “Gullah Gullah Island,” and “Rosewood”) and Sean Samuels (SyFy channel’s “Toxic Shark”), season one of Giants was praised for authentically capturing the black millennial experience and tackling stigmatized issues including mental health, sexual identity, and unconventional means of economic survival.

Giants is executive produced by Empire star Jussie Smollett and talent development intermediary LeadersUp. In an effort to help increase diversity and create on-ramps into the entertainment industry, Giants partnered with LeadersUp to provide young adults of color with the opportunity to gain experience as production assistants. The series is distributed under, an initiative within two-time Golden Globe-nominee Issa Rae’s production company.

Season two really raises the stakes for these characters and their problems rise to a level of hurt that leaves us wondering if they can ever come back from this,” said Bland. “By season’s end we learn that not all giants can be slayed. Some we tame and learn to live with.”

I just checked out a screening of Giants, Season 2, and after watching only two episodes, I must say I was blown away seeing such an inspiring talent put his vision into a masterpiece on film. Finding a way to take life’s challenges and slay them. YASSS!

Even better, I had the opportunity to meet with James. Can you say PASSIONATE AND DETERMINED?? He was so super friendly, I can only hope, as an aspiring actress myself, to collaborate with someday. #Dreams!

GLA: Let’s get to basics. When did you want to become an actor and of course, why? Seems simple but this question is always fascinating.

JB: (former NFL player) Kerry Rhodes and I have a mutual friend who is our costume design on “Giants” and we all got into this conversation about – how we always had an interest to get into performance. But because of our stature I’m 6’6 and he’s 6’4 – so we were always pushed more to sports, and particularly being a black male no one thinks to put us on stage – saying he always singing and dancing around the house, maybe you should put him in theatre. My family only encouraged me to be basketball player – because I’m tall. I’d always loved it. Growing up my only outlet was church, so I enjoyed the Christmas plays and eventually I started writing for the Christmas plays for the youth program. So when I got to college – I went on an academic scholarship and I started playing basketball. The moment I had free time, I decided to picked up on theatre and started auditioning for students plays and then I went over to Florida State and I audition for some student films, that’s when I was introduced into the idea of filmmaking and realized I definitely want to act and make films. So I spent my entire senor year working on my first feature, I wrote it, directed it and that was the nail in the coffin for me to start making films. I was a business major and finished out and received my degree. I moved to Los Angles while I was still in my undergrad and started pursuing filmmaking. I landed an internship with Will Packer (Girls Trip) and they were working on the film Takers and I was his intern and I spent 2 and half years there at the studios. This was like my film school working there as PA, assistant and creator vice presidents. I studied with a few teachers, working on method acting, and taking classes. I told Will Packer that I wanted to be a filmmaker and he asked me if I ever made a film and I said “no,” and he told me to make a film first and then come back to talk to me. So that film I spent my senor year making was the encouragement I got from Will and because I finished that film – he gave me an internship.

Q: What’s your dirty little secret? Confidence issues? Insecurity? Come on, tell us!

JB: Acting is my big insecurity. It’s the thing I struggle with the most because folks will tell me it’ll be hard for to get into this field because of my height. I’ve struggle with being confident with my height and my acting teacher gave me an exercise to help me.

GLA: Here’s a fun one. What’s your idea of a perfect weekend?

JB: I love the spa, sitting in water (hot tub) having a good workout. I get a lot of great ideas when I’m in water. Being on an Island with fun physical activities, great food with family and close friends.

Q: After a long shoot, what’s your favorite way to unwind?

JB: Working out, going to the gym. Being healthy and fit – its helps me let go some of that tension.

GLA: Who are your heroes?

JB: Kendrick Lamar – visually, I want to be the Kendrick Lamar as directors. Chance the rapper in terms of staying independent – I really admire that. In the film world, Ryan Coogler he’s been a huge inspirational from Fruitvale Station, Creed and Black Panther. Xavier Dolan (French Canadian Director) “Mommy” was one of my favorite pieces of cinema that I had the opportunity to witness.

GLA: If you could have a great meal with anyone – at any place, time – who and where would you go?

JB: Jay Z, I’m into his interviews. I would like to talk business with him. Being able to marry the business with art. I admire that.

GLA: Is there a singular message to Giants?

JB: We all have to slay our Giants – we have to slay that thing that stands between us and reach our fullness and destiny. There’s also a reminder that there are some things that we can’t slay. The thorn in your flesh (biblically) some times God will say no and you’ll have to face that Giant.

GLA: How did you get connected with Issa Rae?

JB: I emailed her and asked her. We met 7 years ago; we were friends before the fame. We were writers and we were helping out a mutual on a web series. I don’t know the steps on how to proceed with getting your show onto her you tube channel. I introduced Issa to her producer, who produced Awkward Black Girl, we kept in touch and built on our friendship.


xx Shenika Travis

Beauty & Essex’s Amazing over-the-top $1,000 Valentine’s Day offering!

February 9, 2018

Beauty & Essex‘s amazing over-the-top $1,000 Valentine’s Beauty & Essex Valentine’s offering, anyone? Go big or go home, I say!!

With only 6 available per city (LA , NYC, Vegas), this insane dessert is complete with a chocolate sphere that you crack open to reveal a white diamond from the Beauty & Essex pawn shop. 

Yup. It’s glam time, peeps!

Who luvs ya?

The $1,000 Beauty & Essex Valentine’s Day dessert will include the following:

  • Tray of Espresso Macchiato served with sugar jewels in a heart-shaped locket and a chocolate sphere incasing a round, brilliant cut white diamond from the Beauty & Essex Pawn Shop.
    • The diamond from the Beauty & Essex Pawn Shop is a round, brilliant cut white diamond at 0.10 cts.
  • Jewelry box filled with glitter dusted doughnuts served with caramel, chocolate and berry dipping sauces
  • Jewelry box of chocolate hearts with various fillings
  • Bottle of Veuve Clicquot Rose Champagne 

New Years Eve Is Around The Corner, Here’s What The TAO Group Is Up To

December 14, 2017

 TAO Group will be ringing in the New Year with a one of a kind experience! 

Look no further as TAO Group produces the first of its kind New Year’s Eve experience in Los Angeles. Combining world class cuisine from both TAO and Beauty & Essex, alongside 360˚ views from The Highlight Room, and the ultra-luxe club Avenue; guests have the best of all worlds in one place at one time. 

TAO and Beauty & Essex

Dine at one of Hollywood’s hottest restaurants with two seatings (one on the earlier side and one on the later side). There will be a live DJ performance, entertainment, party favors and a champagne toast at midnight! Those who make a dinner reservation will be able to get 10% off tickets at Avenue or The Highlight Room.

TAO dinner reservations:

Beauty & Essex dinner reservations:

The Highlight Room

Want a bite to eat before ringing in the New Year? With one seating at 9pm, you’ll have 360 views of all of Los Angeles and you dine on a prefix menu. After dinner, walk over to the pool where DJ Sourmilk will be spinning through out the night. As midnight comes, you’ll be able to see fireworks from Downtown to Santa Monica! 

Dinner reservations:



Party with your friends at Avenue Los Angeles, with light bites and an open bar until midnight. The Deux Twins will be hopping on the DJ booth to keep the party going past midnight!


DREAM Hollywood

Wanting to stay in the area? You can book at room at DREAM for 20% off through the TAO Group website or with the code NYEDREAM17. Hotel guests will receive 10% off tickets to Avenue or The Highlight Room. 

Indulge, Revel and Stay, with us on December 31st as we ring in the 2018 with a first of its kind New Year’s Eve experience in Los Angeles. 

How’s that for options?