Spend 10 minutes with Wanderlust 108’s Jacque Halstead

In case we haven’t talked about it enough, world-renowned festival Wanderlust 108 is gracing Adelaide with its amazing presence and message this Saturday. It’s set to be South Australia’s largest mass yoga and meditation event and is here to spread the global mindfulness message. Ahead of this weekend’s festivities, we chat to the incredible Jacque Halstead – currently Head Of Business Development and Programming for Wanderlust ANZ and one of the driving forces behind the Australian incarnation of the festival about how it all started and how it feels bringing such a huge movement to our shores.

Hey Jacque, can you tell us a little more about yourself?

My first love was travel. When I was a teenager I loved airports. I used to drive to the nearest airport on the weekend and hang out in the international terminal. I craved that feeling of going somewhere new and different. After university I sought a job with an international hotel chain at their head office in Beverly Hills. My mission was clear: I needed to travel. A lot!

My second love was yoga. Much like travel, yoga gave me this feeling of being free, of discovering new and exciting places. However, with yoga my exploration was internal and all about discovering me.

I still love both – and both are always about the journey, not the destination.

How did you become in the Wanderlust movement?

It was the collision of two worlds! My husband, Jonnie, was producing large music festivals and I was a yoga teacher, investigating opening a yoga studio. A friend of ours suggested we check out Wanderlust. The idea took a month or two to really sink in.

I had decided not to open a studio around the same time Jonnie was seeking more purpose in his career. We looked at each other and said, “should we just do it?”

Jonnie somehow found Jeff Krasno’s [one of the Wanderlust co-founders] email and sent him a message. Within 12 hours Jeff and Jonnie were on Skype, then Jonnie was on a plane to the US to attend a festival and it all snowballed from there.

Bringing Wanderlust to Australia can’t have been an easy feat – what was involved in setting up the biggest yoga festival in Australia?

Partners with a similar vision, a strong community, an authentic voice, many late nights, lots of tears (good and bad), plus this undying passion and belief in what I am doing and the positive effects it is helping to create.

How does it feel to be bringing Wanderlust to Adelaide for the first time?

I’ve wanted Wanderlust to come to Adelaide for over 3 years now. So it feels pretty darn good.

Wanderlust has such an incredible message behind it and it’s the first of its kind around the world and here at home, how important it is for you to continue to spread this message of mindfulness as far as you can?

I’ve answered the how of us becoming involved in Wanderlust, so here is the why. I am a mumma of three seriously awesome kids. After the birth of my first child, I started to really reflect on what I was doing and what it was doing for my children. I simply wanted and still want to help make this world a better place… if for no other reason, then for them.

Wanderlust Australia was born out of a desire to help people on their internal journey and help them come out better than when they went in. If we can help inspire change in one person at a time then we can possibly help change the world.

Wanderlust is already so massive here and around the world, what’s next on the cards for you?

Besides sleep? I am interested in exploring how to bring mindfulness to youth, especially underprivileged youth. The tool kit that yoga and mediation practices give you for everyday life are priceless. I think these tools should be available to EVERYONE, and most importantly, our (the collective “our”) children.

Wanderlust 108 is on at Bonython Park this Saturday, September 23 from 7.00am-4.00pm.

Read more about the festival and buy tickets here.

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