Tree Dancing Retreat

Climb trees with rope/harnesses
& Dance where gravity feels suspended
Facilitated by Nimble Arts & Mark Przekurat

October 6-8, 2023

Join an aerialist and arborist team for a unique outdoor workshop!

We will discover the freedom and joys of climbing trees with ropes/harnesses and dancing where gravity feels suspended. This is an experiential workshop intended to offer curious movers – aerialists, climbers, researchers, dancers, arborists, acrobats, explorers – an opportunity to ascend into a world of physical and personal discovery. We’ll teach you all the ropes you need to know, including physical and creative techniques while giving you space to explore at your own pace.

Lead Instructors:

  • Tree Dancing/Aerialist: Serenity Smith Forchion from Nimble Arts
  • Tree Climbing/Arborist: Mark Przekurat from Renaissance Acres Tree Care

The retreat will include practical and creative programming:

  • Grounded meditation
  • Tree anatomy
  • Rigging instruction
  • Equipment sampling
  • Creative sharing
  • Stretching & physical training
  • Personal discovery time
  • Opportunity to experience a variety of harnesses, rigging options and climbing tools
  • A chance to learn about installing points for supported exploration on climbing lines that are safe for the tree and safe for you

This retreat includes Tree Dancing activities, plus on site lodging options and catered meals. In addition to Tree Dancing Sessions, you can look forward to swimming and boating in the lake, campfires, quiet alone time, walks in the woods, communal meals, and new friends.

Who is this Retreat for?

Age: 16 & up or by permission of instructor

Physical Prerequisites: Participants should be comfortable with general mobility requirements of a hike in the woods over uneven terrain with moderate exertion. If you have mobility or accessibility considerations, please connect with us to determine how we can best support you as participation in a group setting may not be appropriate for safety.

Health / Travel Insurance: We require all participants to have health insurance. We also recommend travel insurance in case you have any last-minute changes.

Climbing Gear: Saddles, Ropes, Helmets, Safety Glasses, ascending/descending options will all be provided. You may bring your own if you have these items and we teach gear inspection as part of the approval process.

Weather & Nature: Programming is out of doors but if there is inclement weather we’ll use alternative options to carry on. Bring gear for outdoor work – layers of clothing, wet weather gear, sunscreen, hat, bug spray, tick repellant.

Sample Schedule:

(actual schedule TBA)


Arrivals 10am-12pm

Orientation and Tour 12-1pm

Afternoon Session 1-4pm 

Dinner 5:30-6:30pm

Evening Session 7:30-9pm


Saturday      8 am-9pm

Sunday        8 am-4pm



COVID Policy! 

With the re-emergence of COVID around the country, we are re-implementing some protocols to support the successful and safe participation of all our students.  We will require covid testing before participation.  

Note: If a student tests positive for COVID, they will not be allowed to participate.  Additionally, there is no refund for illness, so it is highly recommended that you do what you can to prevent getting COVID before our workshop.

  •  Minimize your exposure before the workshop. 
  • Wear a mask in tight quarters or in public.  
  • Consider not attending crowded functions just prior to the workshop.  
  • Social distance 

“I enjoyed the way the workshop was structured — with wonderful warm-ups and cool downs, time to gather inspiration. . .time to learn specific skills, and encouragement to play and explore on my own.”

Tree Dancing Retreat Participant, 2022

“The Nimble Arts method is truly something Masterful and I am so grateful their progressions, safety awareness, and general way about learning was the groundwork for my Circus Career.”

– Vertical Harness Workshop Participant, 2022

“Learning from Serenity goes much deeper than incredible circus skills she is able to guide us into embodying… she holds space for personal transformation as artists cultivating creativity, and as humans moving through the world with integrity and love.”

– Vertical Harness Workshop Participant, 2023

About Nimble Arts

Nimble Arts performer on a trapeseNimble Arts was founded by identical twin aerialists Elsie Smith & Serenity Smith Forchion to create inventive works of theatrical circus. Their own performing resumes include duo swinging trapeze with Cirque du Soleil, aerials and acrobatics with Ringling Bros. & Barnum and Bailey, the Pickle Family Circus and many other circuses around the world including guest performances at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. They are Bronze Medal winners at the Albacete Circus Festival, and received a Special Award at the invitational Wuqiao Circus Festival in China for their unique spinning duo trapeze act. Their Nimble Arts ensemble includes performers formerly with Cirque Eloize, Circa, Big Apple Circus, Pilobolus and others. Elsie & Serenity received the Vermont Governor’s Walter Cerf Excellence in the Arts Award and the American Circus Educators Excellence in Education Award. In 2007, Elsie & Serenity founded the New England Center for Circus Arts, now the leading circus school in the United States. 

Retreat Location

WildHeart is located on 46+ beautiful acres in the Hudson Valley. Retreatants will have the option to stay in a single room, double room, dorm, or camping in either our main retreat center or in private two-bedroom cabins. All options have access to shared kitchens and bathrooms. Daily events will take place in the studio, shared common spaces, and outdoors. Retreatants are welcome to enjoy the lawns, walk in the forest, and swim and boat in the lake during their stay! More info about directions and transportation options HERE.

If you have any questions, concerns about pricing, or need assistance attending, please do not hesitate to reach out personally.


Course Size: We aim for a 1 to 6 teacher to student ratio. Workshop will be canceled up to 2 weeks prior to start if the minimum size is not reached.

Refund Policy: The first $250 of payment is a nonrefundable deposit. The fee minus the deposit is refundable up to 2 weeks before the first day of the workshop, after which time no refund will be given. Full refunds will be given if the workshop is canceled by the host due to under enrollment.

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Find out about WildHeart happenings!