Hollis Church's latest venture is The Glowing Body, a combination yoga studio, apparel shop and high-eneregy foods cafe in Downtown North.
latest venture is The Glowing Body
, a combination yoga studio, apparel shop and high-eneregy foods cafe in Downtown North.
is relaying all this from the heart of her
latest venture, The Glowing Body
, a combination yoga studio, apparel shop, and high-energy foods cafe in Downtown North.She's animated, dressed head to toe in shades of purple, hair in two tiny pigtails, purple butterfly earrings swinging as she goes into the part where she became the winter caretaker, enthralled with the cold and the beauty, the physical work, radioing the weather down to the hiking guides.
"If I hadn't gotten pregnant, I probably would have been a lifer on Mt. LeConte," she
says.A craving for beefsteak alerted the "sincere vegan" to her
changing hormones, and back down the mountain she
"I started cooking for families in town because I could put my daughter Kira on the floor or in a backpack," she
says."Then one thing led to another."
Knoxville's first coffee house, Java, opened and Church
offered to make its muffins."Then I started making lunch stuff ... "
During a stint as a sous chef she
hit it off with local raw and vegetarian food maven Yawah Awolowo and they went into vegetarian catering."We ended up splitting the company when the backstage catering got going," says Church
."I really enjoyed that and Yawah was doing more weddings and parties.We're still great friends."
The LeConte experience held her
in good stead, says Church
."When you know how to order groceries that are coming up on llamas, you're born for rock 'n' roll catering," she
says with a big grin."It's all by the seat of your pants."
still owns the company, Dega Catering
, but others now go on tour, not her
.Cutting back on travel six years ago let her
love affair with yoga."That's when I started, but I'd known since my twenties that I was going to get into it," she
Still, says Church
never been evangelical."I can't preach because I'm not strict about anything," she
says."Yoga and raw foods people can get radical and real precious.But I want to make it something kind of normal--just a little something you can add into your life."
This morning, Church
is sitting gracefully on a cafe stool, ready to dip into a bowl of the raw "easy fruit" mix that's her
specialty ("We're thinking of converting the name to berry soup," she
admits with a smile), surrounded by vases of sunflowers and lucky bamboos and natural wood.It could have been much different—originally Scott Carpenter and Peggy Hambright purchased the building and Church
was slated for a full-scale vegetarian restaurant up front.
And it seems right, says Church