A premier travel destination in the Hudson Valley welcomes more than 500 dynamic teachers for lifelong learning opportunities

RHINEBECK, NY – Omega Institute, the nation’s leading source for wellness and personal growth, reopens to the public on April 21, with more than 350 workshops, conferences and professional trainings scheduled at the Rhinebeck campus in 2010. Each year, more than 23,000 people from all walks of life attend Omega’s programs, which are designed to foster lifelong learning, inspired living and community building. Whether coming on one’s own, as a family, as a couple, for a workshop or as part of a professional training, Omega offers something for everyone. 

“Whether you choose to take a break with a Rest and Rejuvenation Retreat; hone a skill or develop a passion; or explore something completely new, you will find just the workshop, training, or retreat you need to be inspired,” said Skip Backus, chief executive officer at Omega Institute. 

Located in the heart of the Hudson Valley, just 90 miles north of New York City, Omega is open seasonally, from April through October. Many of Omega’s guests attend educational programs, while some come just to rest and rejuvenate. 

2010 Program Highlights 

Rest and Rejuvenation Retreats: R&R Retreats are designed to help you de-stress and relax. Explore Omega’s core teachings in classes exclusive to R&R Retreat guests. Unwind with daily open classes in yoga, tai chi, movement and meditation. Reconnect with nature on our beautiful 195-acre campus. All-inclusive accommodations package includes meals, activities, use of campus facilities. 

Veterans Retreat, April 21–25: Opening week, Omega will welcome more than 100 veterans for the 4th annual veterans program titled “The Costs of War Violence and Denial.” The five-day meditation retreat is taught by Zen Buddhist monk, Vietnam veteran and author Claude Anshin Thomas, and is aimed at providing tools for dealing with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Scholarships cover the cost of tuition, accommodations, meals on campus and up to $100 in travel expenses. Thomas does not accept payment for his teachings, so Omega donates a portion of the retreat’s proceeds to the Zaltho Foundation.

Service Week, May 31–June 4: Omega’s unique grant program offers nonprofit organizations representing a broad spectrum of social issues on local, statewide, national and global levels free accommodations, meals, a private meeting space, and an optional consultation with Omega’s partner, the New York Council of Nonprofits (NYCON), at an on-site Nonprofit Wellness and Restructuring Clinic. Grantees are able to hold strategic planning meetings, often not possible during normal work flow. 

Arts Week July, 11–16: Accomplished and budding artists choose from more than 10 workshops spanning the arts, including Songwriting with Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Flying Trapeze with Peter Gold, East Meets West: Watercolor Painting with Lian Zhen, and more. 

Family Week, Aug. 8–13: Family Week offers parents and kids a unique balance of time together and time spent apart in age appropriate workshops. Adults choose from workshops like Healthy Living from the Inside Out with Mariel Hemmingway, Unleashing the Tennis Player Within with Rob Polishook and more. Workshops for kids include: New Visions Photography Camp with Todd Shapiro, Beyond Basketball with Ellen Riley & Kevin Heath and more. 

Being Yoga Conference Retreat, Aug. 20–22: Being Yoga unites more than 30 national yoga experts for a weekend exploration into yoga, health and wellness. Beginners and seasoned yoga practitioners can choose from more than 50 classes, with top teachers like Shiva Rea, Rodney Yee, Seane Corn and many others. The weekend offers more than just yoga with additional classes in vegetarian cooking, meditation, philosophy, Thai massage and dance movement. 

Women and Power: Our Time to Lead, Sept. 24–26: Omega’s Women & Power conferences have been at the forefront of the women’s movement for the last eight years. This fall’s conference brings together several hundred participants and more than 30 leaders including New York Times columnist Gail Collins, astronaut Mae Jemison, and Gammy-winning recording artist Ani DiFranco, for rich conversations and practical steps for strengthening women’s leadership worldwide. 

Design by Nature, Oct. 15–17: Despite the urgency of the environmental crises we are facing, there are real reasons for hope. Some of the best solutions are nature-based designs from the fields of biomimicry, permaculture, and sustainable architecture. Design by Nature brings together some of the nation’s leaders in these fields to explore the creative potential of these promising technologies. Skip Backus, Omega’s chief executive officer and the visionary behind the Omega Center for Sustainable Living, hosts the event, which is ideal for green builders, architects, biologists, educators, activists and anyone interested in building a sustainable future.

Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL): In 2009 Omega opened the doors to the award-winning OCSL, a state-of-the-art environmental education center and water reclamation facility. The OCSL is in the process of being certified LEED Platinum, and is expected to be one of the first “Living Buildings,” the most comprehensive green building challenge available today. Free public tours are offered year round, and students of all ages are welcome to visit. To book tours, e-mail JeffreyR@eomega.org or call (845) 266.4444, ext. 377. 

In addition to touring the OCSL, guests staying on Omega’s campus have free use of the library, sauna, Sanctuary, lake, tennis courts, basketball court, woodland trails, beautiful gardens and WiFi Internet access in the Omega Café. The Omega Wellness Center offers a wide variety of services to enhance overall well-being. Guests also have the option to attend daily yoga, tai chi, meditation and movement classes. Childcare services are available for children ages 4 to 12. Guests can choose from a variety of accommodations, and receive three delicious buffet meals each day as part of the All-Inclusive Accommodations Package. 

Each year, Omega awards more than $100,000 in scholarships to qualified applicants with limited finances or special needs. Scholarship applications for Omega’s annual Women and Power conference are now available online; the deadline is June 1, 2010.

About Omega Institute for Holistic Studies

Founded in 1977, Omega Institute for Holistic Studies is the nation’s most trusted source for wellness and personal growth. As a nonprofit organization, Omega offers diverse and innovative educational experiences that inspire an integrated approach to personal and social change. Located on 195 acres in the beautiful Hudson Valley, Omega welcomes more than 23,000 people to its workshops, conferences and retreats in Rhinebeck, New York and at exceptional locations around the world. For more information, visit eOmega.org.