Meet Our New Manager – Clea

Hi, I’m Clea, the new manager at the Casa del Soul Suites in downtown Crestone, Colorado.  I’m excited to be here to bring some fresh ideas and energy to the building and our guests.

I have been living in Crestone for 4 ½ years.  Auspicious events led me here.   For my birthday, a few years back, my best friend from the Chicago area said she would get an RV and we could go wherever I’d like to go.  I got out a big map and this little town in Colorado—Crestone—came off the page engulfed in light.  Crestone?  I’d never heard of it so I Googled it—it sounded like a fascinating little place and I knew I had to at least visit this magical place.  A few months later, I made it happen.

On my approach into the tiny little town, at the end of a 15 mile cul-de-sac, called the ‘T’ road, I saw and felt the magical, mystical light filled energy coming off the Sangre de Cristo range of the Rocky Mountains and realized that this place would become my new home.  I permanently moved here six months later.

Crestone is a unique community filled with very diverse people.  There is a tremendous opportunity for emotional, spiritual and self-growth as long as one stays open to new ideas and experiences.  The past melds into the present and the future providing a glimpse of a different reality than I had ever imagined.

I became a patient of Cheyenne Mendel(co-owner of Casa Del Soul) in the fall of 2012.  Meeting and working with Cheyenne was life changing.  Cheyenne Mendel is an acupuncturist and so much more.  She is an intuitive, psychic empath who has connections with different energies.  I feel fortunate to have her as my healer.

A few months later I became Cheyenne’s assistant in her acupuncture clinic.  The loving and caring environment in the office and Cheyenne’s presence soon became the best ‘job’ I ever had.  We make a good team.   A few months after that, Cheyenne and Joe Mendel asked me to manage the Casa del Soul suites in downtown Crestone.  I had never managed an inn before but their confidence in me and my own desire for a change made my decision to say ‘yes’ easy.  I’m so glad I did.

In December of 2013 I became the manager at the Casa del Soul.  The Casa del Soul is a private refuge in downtown Crestone.  We offer one and two bedroom suites with full kitchens, wifi, Direct TV and a beautiful fenced yard (with grass).  We welcome well-behaved pets and respectful people.
I, myself, share my life with my beautiful red border collie, Latte.  She has quickly become the Casa del Soul mascot greeting and entertaining all of our guests and visitors.  Her job is to evaluate the dogs that want to stay here; so far she’s turned no one away =)



The Casa del Soul is undergoing some major changes—we are now a nightly/weekly pet-friendly hotel.  We have deep cleaned all the rooms and made sure they are all well stocked.  We have also commissioned a beautiful new sign made by a local, professional sign artist.  The sign has been stopping traffic since it was hung a few days ago.  We also constructed a new greenhouse in the back so we have become gardeners.
We also have plans to chink and stain the outside of the entire building so the flower baskets we will be hanging when the warm weather comes have a beautiful backdrop.  We’re excited about all the changes and are looking forward to being busy all seasons.

Stay updated with local events by following this blog via email, by clicking on the “Follow” button on the right side of this page. Relax and Rejuvenate with a room at Casa Del Soul in beautiful downtown Crestone.

Art Symposium: World Traveler Martin Macaulay

Local photographer and world traveler Martin Macaulay will be Shumei’s featured artist this April. Treat your eyes to a trip around the world with photos from the Antarctic to the Southwest USA and from Patagonia to Namibia.

Meet with Martin and learn more about his work at the symposium and reception at 3pm on Sunday April 3rd. This exhibit will run the entire month of April and is free to the public.The Shumei gallery is open every day 9 to 5pm.

Martin Macaulay, photography exhibit, Colorado photorgaphy, Colorado photographers

Martin Macaulay

For more information visit or call 719-256-5284. Stay updated with local events by following this blog via email, by clicking on the “Follow” button on the right side of this page. Relax and Rejuvenate with a room at Casa Del Soul in beautiful downtown Crestone.

Spring Navratri – Divine Mother Festival in Crestone, Colorado from March 30-April 7, 2014

Haidikhandi Universal Ashram is hosting the annual Spring Navratri -Divine Mother Festival during March 30 – April 7.

This Festival welcomes and nourishes our time of rebirth and Spring by honoring the  Divine Mother, the giver of all life, for nine days.  This celebration includes daily fire ceremonies, pujas, discourses, reading, chanting and other ceremonies

This year the celebration will stretch over two weekends and out-of-town visitors are encouraged to attend. Each day is full of special pujas* to the different aspects of the Divine Mother, fire ceremonies, chanting, discourses, and aaratis.

*Pujas are a chance to show reverence to a god, a spirit, or other divine entity through invocations, prayers, songs, and rituals

Call 719-256-4108 or email us the Ashram for more information.

Reserve a room in downtown Crestone at

Personal Leadership Seminar in Crestone, Colorado

At the very essence of the PL practices lies the possibility of sustaining our greatest clarity, our most enlivened energy, our most expanded heart. Come to Crestone, the inspirational home of PL Seminars, for a gathering of PL practitioners. We will dive deep and fly high exploring this most joyous of possibilities of living from the inside out.

personal leadership book, leadership books, Colorado retreats, Crestone Colorado retreats, 2014 Colorado retreatsWe imagine a PL family gathering where we individually and collectively learn from some of the amazing teachers in Crestone, hike the mountain trails, walk a labyrinth, soak in the hot springs and have conversations with PL friends in the retreat house garden. AND THEN we imagine coming together at the end of a day to share our insights and questions.

Come join the PL founders and PL practitioners and facilitators!!! March 3-6th, 2014. Please join us for a uniquely powerful and joyous experience. Register today at:

Reserve your lodging at Casa Del The beautiful Casa Del Soul is nestled in the heart of downtown Crestone with comfortable rooms and suites, and spectacular views of the mountains.

Gardening and Healthy Living in Colorado – 4th Annual SLV Seed Exchange

Is your New Years resolution to start a garden? Do you have a garden and want to use locally grown seeds? If so then you’ll want to attend the 4th Annual SLV Seed Exchange on Saturday, February 15th from 11am-3pm.  This event will be in downtown Crestone; at the  Charter School, 330 Lime Ave., and is free to the public.

Growing your own food has become more than just a trend.  As global awareness about food quality increases the use of pesticides, GMO’s,  and a wider array of environmental pollution is causing concern across the globe. With such a scope of problems facing us the solutions for change can be daunting. Leigh Mills of the Grow a Garden Series wants to share a simple solution in the form of growing, saving, and sharing local seeds; thus promoting a self-sufficient lifestyle while contributing to local food security.

Whether you are new, experienced, or simply considering the idea, this is your chance to share knowledge and learn about high-altitude, high-desert gardening.  Tables will be available for gardeners to sit with their seed and exchange with other gardeners and event participants for new seeds, information, or possibly cash donations; and there will be a door prize giveaway with products donated by Grow a Garden sponsors.

Pure, non GMO, locally adapted seeds are vital to our existence. In learning how to grow and save them we are investing in our future.  For more information about the Grow a Garden series, and the 4th Annual SLV Seed Exchange, please visit the Grow a Garden website: or call Leigh at 719-655-2011.

seed saving colorado, colorado gardening event

2013 SLV Seed Exchange

Lodging is available at Casa Del

Art Symposium for Marika Popovitz at the Shumei Institute

Luminosity and brilliance characterize the unparalleled paintings of Marika Popovits, and James O’Dea’s poetic meditations inspired by each of her exhibited works—to be presented January 19 at 3 PM in the Shumei Gallery.

Interweaving two distinct genres, a rare event in the arts, represents a merger that elevates both—like the harmony of two notes creating a resonance not predictable by either note.

Marika’s husband, Burt Wadman, notes that Pictures at an Exhibition by Mussorgsky was the result of the Russian composer being so moved by paintings of an architect who died in his 30s that each section of this famous piano cycle was inspired by one of the young artist’s works.

James & Marika 2 - small

Hungarian-born and exhibiting a passion for painting, Marika trained at age seven in anatomy and perspective. Studying in Germany, Australia, the U.S. and Italy, and longing to give expression to the One (based on inner experiences begun in her youth) amid manifest life, she pushed the limitations of paint and gave form to her remarkable visions via the long-lost recipe of the Renaissance technique of Velatura (‘glazing’), brought about by studying the works of Da Vinci, Titian and Grunewald.

Marika, who could have taught in any university and enjoyed a famed career, chose instead to focus on the lustre of Nature’s incredibly elegant imminence moving from utter mystery through layer on layer of expression. Her work (1991-2011) appears in a recent book, entitled Radiance.

Combining rarified art with words that complement and compel demands subtle spiritual clarity and deep contact with the oracular. James O’Dea, global peace leader and best-selling author of Cultivating Peace, turned to an activism of words…as if each painting in Marika’s 11-piece series—called The Golden Overmind—were for him an epiphany.

James creatively has met each with the feeling of its intention, grandeur and range of power. Reminiscent of poets speaking on balconies to audiences in vast plazas, James’ poetic contemplation unleash the evocation of silence and the loftiest of enactments for anyone fortunate to attend this alchemical event. More information is available at and you can see Marika’s art at

Lodging is available at CasaDelSoul.

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Visit Colorado: Crestone Summer and Autmumn Event Guide for 2014

There are so many great events happening in Crestone during 2014.  Here is a sampling of the upcoming year. There are events for the whole family and for a single soul in need of rejuvenation.

June 21-25: 23rd Annual Earth Knack Family Gathering.

July 4th: The Annual Fourth of July Parade complete with water balloon fight.

August 1-3: The Crestone Music Fest, featuring 27 bands on 2 stages.

August 22-26: Landscaping Art Retreat with Jennifer Thompson.

September 23-October 1: Fall Navrarti – Divine Mother Festival at Haidakhandi Universal Ashram.

October 23: Diwali Festival of Lights at Haidakhandi Universal Ashram.

Thanksgiving Weekend: Winterfest Holiday Shopping, featuring local artists, and specialty crafts people with unique and quality gifts.

Monthly Events:

Concerts and Artist Symposiums featuring local and international artists at the Shumei Institute.

Full Moon and New Moon Fire Ceremonies at HaHaidakhandi Universal Ashram.

We look forward to sharing our wonderful town with you in 2014. Lodging is available at CasaDelSoul.

* Subscribe to our blog to stay updated on future events. There is a sign up link on the sidebar of this blog.

Dinner Theater Extravaganza by the Crestone Company Players

Crestone Company of Players presents the Dinner Theater Extravaganza.

Storyteller waiters will serve you a delicious three course meal and drink along with live entertainment. Everyone is encouraged to wear a costume or their fanciest dress. One in five attendees will win a door prize from local valley merchants.

Just $30 per person! Join us on December 15th from 6-8:30pm at the Yak N Cracker Restaurant.

Lodging is available in downtown Crestone at

Elements and Elementals Weekend Workshop with Láné Sáan Moonwalker on December 7-8, 2014

December 7th: Working with Elements and Elementals 
Workshop with Native American teacher and healer Láné Sáan Moonwalker.   Elementals have been known by a variety of names in different cultures; faeries, elves, kushare, angels, plant devas, dralas, kami…elementals are the intelligence or wisdom of the elements.  Learn to build a conscious and intimate relationship with those elementals that benefit and assist Mother Earth, and experience your own enhanced awareness and perception in the process.

Saturday, December 7th from 9:30 to 4:30.  $75, or $140 for both workshops. To register and for location call Dorje Root, 937-7786, or

December 8th: Element Wisdom Workshop
In this workshop we will be working with our local riparian elements and elementals.  This is a hands-on, experiential workshop for those who want to develop a stronger relationship with these beings; nagas, water sprites, faeries, and others.  Come prepared to spend time outside.  This is the “lab class” for Saturday’s workshop, including practices to foster these connections.

Riparian Environment Series, Part 6 with Láné Sáan Moonwalker.   
Sunday, December 8th from 9:30 to 4:30.  $75, or $140 for both workshops.  At the Colorado College Conference Center.  To register call Dorje Root, 937-7786, or

Learn about Dorje Root and  Láné Sáan Moonwalker at

Lodging is available at Casa Del Soul in downtown Crestone.

Holiday Shoppers in Colorado Support Local Businesses at Winterfest 2013

This year’s seasonal kick-off of Crestone’s holiday fun will be December 6, 7 and 8. Mark your calendars and invite your out-of-town friends for the magical, cheer-filled celebration of Crestone holiday spirit.

Photo credit Town of Crestone

The Crestone Artisans Gallery opens the festivities on Friday night. The gallery will be featuring new work by area artists and special holiday music. Hot cider and wine with holiday snacks will be served during the opening from 4 to 6pm.

Afterward, go across the park and join the campfire and singing where area youth will be hosting the event. The Bliss Restaurant will be offering dinner, and of course, the usual beverage selection and camaraderie until closing.

Saturday begins with the traditional Gift Bazaar in a centralized location this year: the new Crestone Charter School. Hours are 10am to 5pm on Saturday, and 11am to 4pm on Sunday. A variety of craftsmen and fine artists will offer new and exciting products and gift ideas, as well as old favorites you have come to expect. Look for wooden toys, fine fibers and knitted items, special ornaments, natural beauty products, handmade soaps, leather wrapped jewelry, beadwork and antler jewelry, and much more. Chokurei and other vendors will be offering delectable warm foods at the Charter School both days.

Robin Blankenship will have that beautiful horse and cart you’ve seen driving around town by the Charter School, carrying a load of pumpkin bread and hot cider between 11:30am and 1:30pm on both Saturday and Sunday. It will make traveling between the school and town a charming delight.

Santa will be arriving on Saturday. We expect him to land sometime around 2pm. Who knows what goodies he’ll bring for good little boys and girls? Watch out, you may see him strolling around town, or perhaps he’ll hitch a ride behind a horse, or maybe even a reindeer. We’ll also have storytellers and listen to musicians play special music to build the holiday mood.

So put on your holiday spirit, get out your shopping list, and support your local artists and craftsmen.

For more information on how you can participate, call Mati Fuller at 256-5330. Special thanks to our Early Bird Angel sponsors The Crestone Mercantile and the Artisans Gallery for their support. Thank them early and often by sharing the generosity and shopping locally!

Lodging is available at Casa Del Soul in downtown Crestone