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Rooftop yoga to ring in Independence Day

Before the cook-outs and the fireworks begin, one group in Scranton will kick off the 4th of July on a peaceful note.

SCRANTON, Pa. — There's only one place we know of where you can ring in America's birthday with yoga, set to live orchestra music, on a rooftop. And it's right here in the Electric City. 

Hilary Steinberg, the owner of Jaya Yoga in Clarks Summit, has helped organize Yoga on the Roof for nearly a decade's worth of Independence Days.

"It's a really cool thing to look up and see an average of 115 to 200 people who are practicing yoga, listening to music, and looking out over the view," Steinberg said.

Steinberg calls it her "Christmas in July." 

"It's a really great way to ground. It's a great way to spend some time just focusing on yourself, on your community, on your friends. The energy is palpable, and the music is transformative," Steinberg said.

That music comes from the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic. This year's event celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic and supports its multiple music education programs throughout the region.

"The Philharmonic is a professional symphony orchestra. It's a wonderful gift for the region. We are very special; it's one of the best regional orchestras in the state," board member Carol Dembert, who helps organize this event, said.

"When you sell out an entire concert hall, which is an impossible thing to do especially during COVID, tickets bring in only less than half of the revenue, required to produce the concert. So we really need to fundraise," Dembert said.

Funds raised from this event go towards "Music in our Schools", "Meet the Maestra", "NEPA Philharmonic's Young People's Concert", and "Mentoring Program" for talented regional high school students.

Yogis like Donna Vannan are happy to support the cause and take in the view. She's also the owner of Maximum Zen Bakery and is providing post-yoga treats.

"I love being part of something that supports the community and the Philharmonic orchestra. I think music is a very important part of life, and it's wonderful that (the Philharmonic's) around, and people can participate with the yoga."

Yoga on the Roof is taking place Monday, July 4, at 9 a.m. on the roof of the Electric City Parking Garage. Tickets are $15 and the event is open to all ages and abilities. Yoga mats are BYO and you can register here.

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