Fundraising the Celibriyoga Way

Mrs. Alec Baldwin, yoga teacher Hilaria Thomas, uses her newfound celebrity clout for charitable causes. A $10,000 private class, anyone?
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Mrs. Alec Baldwin, yoga teacher Hilaria Thomas, uses her newfound celebrity clout for charitable causes. A $10,000 private class, anyone?

Think $100 is a lot to pay for a private yoga session with your favorite teacher? What about $10,000? That’s what Hilaria Baldwin, the popular New York yoga instructor who became a household name when she married actor Alec Baldwin a few months back, charged for a recent private class. But she didn’t plunk the 5-digit check into her bank account. The pricey session (which was paired with a night at the theater with her husband) was part of an auction to raise money for Guild Hall, a center for visual and performing arts in East Hampton, New York. Though the theater is an industry close to her husband’s heart, it isn’t Hilaria’s only worthy cause these days. On Friday she'll lead a class to benefit the Child Mind Institute, a New York City nonprofit organization dedicated to researching and improving mental health care for children.

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Friday's event was organized by the Southampton-based studio Yoga Gives, and the tickets are only $250—a bargain compared to some of these other events!

Yoga Gives is a studio that was established to host yoga benefit events with popular teachers in the Hamptons. Other events organized by Yoga Gives include fundraising for organizations like the Retreat, an East Hampton shelter for victims of domestic violence, and the Sag Harbor Food Pantry. “To me it’s a natural pairing,” said Amanda Taylor, Yoga Gives founder, in a recent Bloomberg article. “The idea of yoga is to be of service, to be present to other people, to be aware, awake and alive.”

And the lucky bidder who gets the private yoga session with Hilaria? Hedge-fund-manager-turned-entrepreneur Nick Lobaccaro. We suggest he practice his Ujjayi breath; for 10 G's, he's going to want to make that class last.