Solstice in Times Square: (FREE) Mind Over Madness Yoga

Solstice in Times Square: Mind Over Madness Yoga Presented by Aerie Schedule

What better way to channel your inner zen than amongst thousands of other New Yorkers at the center of the city? Well you can do just that on June 21st for the annual Solstice in Times Square: Mind Over Madness Yoga event where you can enjoy free yoga classes all day long, taught by experienced instructors. Read on to check out the complete schedule as well as how to register for some of these awesome yoga classes.

Solstice in Times Square: Mind Over Madness Yoga Presented by Aerie Schedule

Solstice in Times Square: Mind Over Madness Yoga Presented by Aerie Schedule

7:30am – 8:30am: Douglass Stewart
9:30am – 10:30am: Sarah Finger
11:30am – 12:30am: #AerieREAL Empowered Flow with Catherine Gignac
1:30pm – 2:30pm: Bikram Yoga with Jen Lobo and Donna Rubin
3:30pm – 4:30pm: Aditi Shah and Rachel Cohen
5:30pm – 6:30pm: Colleen Saidman Yee and Rodney Yee
7:30pm – 8:30pm: LUNA Deep House Yoga with Lauren Taus and DJ Tasha Blank

While you register, please consider donating to Bent on Learning or Exhale to Inhale, our two NYC-based yoga-related charity partners. Since all Solstice classes are free, consider a donation equal to the amount you would normally pay for a yoga class (ex. $25, $15, $10).

Join the conversation at #SolsticeTSq and mention us @TimesSquareNYC.

Secure your tickets here:

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Greener Home with ECOS and an Interview

ecos products for a green home

One of the easiest steps that anyone can take to become a greener consumer is to seek out green companies. And thankfully there are more options out there these days that have even hit mainstream stories, making it even easier to shop ethically. One of our favorites is ECOS, a company that makes all of their products with plant-derived cleaning agents! Started in 1967 with a singular mission: to make affordable environmentally-friendly cleaning products that would not only tackle life’s dirtiest jobs but also protect the planet’s precious resources in the process. Amazing, right!

Today, they continue to adhere to these values and now offer more than 200 environmentally friendly products. We are huge fans and recently had the chance to try out some household staples, like the ECOS Hand SoapECOS All Purpose Cleaner and ECOS Dishmate that we use on the daily. Not only do these products effectively clean up all of the grit and grime from life, they do so without any yucky add-ons. You can opt for a mild scent (we are digging the citrus/green combo of the lemongrass), or opt for an equally powerful collection of products from their free and clear range.

ecos free and clear line

Additionally, all of their products are mode in the U.S. at one of four manufacturing facilities that are carbon neutral, water neutral and Zero Waste Platinum certified, saving over 53 million pounds of carbon dioxide annually and diverting over 95% of all waste from landfills. To learn more about this company, we had the chance to speak with Jenna Arkin, Earth Friendly Products’ Product Development Director. Read on to check out even more about ECOS and why they are one of our favorites.

Interview with ECOS

Wellness Patterns: Can you tell us what it means to produce products in a carbon neutral, water neutral facility?

Jenna Arkin: We power our sustainable manufacturing plants with 100% renewable energy, including solar panels at each facility. Since we became carbon neutral in 2013, we’ve saved over 53 million pounds of carbon dioxane annually. That’s the equivalent of removing 5,089 passenger vehicles from the road each year! Water neutrality is a measure of “zero net water usage.” We achieved this by significantly reduced our water use and by supporting programs that restore water to critically depleted ecosystems.

Wellness Patterns: What does it mean to be zero waste platinum certified?

Jenna Arkin: Zero Waste Platinum certification means that we divert over 95% of our waste from landfills and incineration.

Wellness Patterns: How do you save waste from going into landfills?

Jenna Arkin: We provide extensive training to our employees to help them minimize waste in their daily activities through reducing, reusing, recycling, and most importantly, rethinking ways to prevent waste. Our vendors are a critical part of our Zero Waste success, as we work closely with them to minimize the packaging they send to your facilities and ensure that materials are recyclable.

Wellness Patterns: What are some of your innovations for 2017 and best sellers?

Jenna Arkin: Our long time best seller is our ECOS hypoallergenic Laundry detergent. Just this past year, we have added a new enzyme formula that has added stain removal power, available in two new signature scents – Fresh Geranium and Honeydew.

We are also excited to unveil our newly rebranded “ECOS for Pets!” line of products, wth stain and odor removers and grooming solutions for all of our furry & feathered friends. All of our pet products have been formulated using “Human” personal care and cleaning standards, ensuring that only the safest products come into contact with pets. Our new Peppermint Hypoallergenic Grooming Shampoo is also the first ever Safer Choice certified pet product on the market! This means that the formula has been vetted by the us EPA to contain only the safest ingredients in class.

Wellness Patterns: How did the company start?

Jenna Arkin: Our company was founded in 1967 by a man that embodies the ideal of the American Dream. Van Vlahakis came to our country from Greece with $22 in his pocket and put himself through a rigourous college education in Chemistry. He founded our company in his garage with the mission of providing safer, greener cleaners at a time when no one yet understood the dangers of toxic chemicals in cleaning products. Today we continue to be inspired by Van’s pioneering and innovative spirit, and we’re proud to provide environmentally friendly cleaners that work great at a much lower price than other green cleaners. This year we’re celebrating 50 years of green cleaning!

Wellness Patterns: What are some of your goals for the future of the company?

Jenna Arkin: We’re going to continue to innovate and be at the cutting edge of green chemistry! We’ll also continue to work with local and federal legislators to lobby for safer chemical policies and ingredient transparency to protect American consumers. Most importantly, we’ll continue to grow and provide green jobs in the four local communities in the U.S. where we manufacture our products.

To learn more about ECOS, please visit:

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FREE Yoga on International Yoga Day!

International Yoga Day 2017 at Battery Park City

International Yoga Day 2017 is quickly approaching! And to celebrate, the Consulate General of India, in collaboration with New York City Public Advocate’s Office and the Parks Department, are presenting a celebration of mindfulness with 30-minute yoga and meditation sessions.

Led by such organizations as Hindu Temple of North America, Mallakhamb Federation, Urban Yogis, and the Arts of Living Foundation, among others, this free event will be held on June 19, 2017 from 5.00-8:30pm at Castle Clinton in Battery Park. While the admission is free, participants are encouraged to sign up, and the first 500 participants to register online will receive a free yoga mat!


Even more International Yoga Day Events

May 23 * 11am -12pm * New Beginning Nursery School, Tarrytown NY

June 10 * 10AM -12PM * Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows, NY

June 7 * Woodrow Wilson Middle School, Edison, NJ
June 9 * South Plainfield Middle School, NJ
June 12 * Woodbridge Middle School, NJ
June 21 * Mallakhamb Studio, South Plainfield, NJ

June 12 * 10AM -2PM * Massachussetts State House, Boston

June 15 * 11AM -1PM * Liberty Intl airport, Newark

June 15 * 2PM -4PM * Liberty Intl airport, Newark

JAi HANUMAN SHAKHA, HINDU SWAYAMSEVAK SANGH USA June 18 * 6PM -7PM * 80 E Barclay St, Hicksville, NY

June 18 * 7AM -11AM * Liberty Park, Columbus OH

June 21 * 7:30AM -7:30PM * Times Square, New York NY

June 21 * 7AM -9AM * State house lawn, Columbus OH

June 21 * 6PM -8:30PM * Public Square/Community Hall, Mayfield Village OH

June 24 * 5AM -7AM * Yoga with Baba Ramdev, Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City NJ

June 24 * 5PM -8PM * Kensico Dam Plaza, Westchester County, NY

June 25 * 9:30AM -12PM * Woodbridge High school, Woodbridge NJ

June 25 * 9:30AM -1PM * Arya Samaj, Hillside Ave, Jamaica NY

June 25 * 9.30AM -1.30PM * Hindu Temple, Flushing, NY

June 25 * 10AM -2PM * State of Connecticut Capitol Building, Hartford CT

The admission to the event is free for to participate, but registration is encouraged at:

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Latest Food Craze: Drinkable Soup from Fawen

Latest Food Craze: Drinkable Soup from Fawen

As a busy mom on-the-go I’m always looking for healthy snacks that I can pack for myself and my kids during whatever adventure we may venture on. While I do love me some fruit and nuts, there’s now another option to add to your ever-growing magic of tricks with Fawen, a collection of ready-todrink vegan soups. Yes, drinkable soups!

Latest Food Craze: Drinkable Soup from Fawen

Latest Food Craze: Drinkable Soup from Fawen

Packed with tons of fiber, vitamins and minerals, the innovative Fawen line contains three flavors, including: Beet & Purple Cabbage with Cumin; Broccoli & Cauliflower with Turmeric and Sweet Potato and Red Lentil with Cinnamon. This can be enjoyed chilled, hot or room temp to enable you to get a burst of nutrients without any of the timely prep that comes with soup-making. We recently had the chance to try out the line, and I was surprised by how the soups were so rich and full of flavor, which isn’t normally the case with packaged soups. They were light, delicious, and of course, so convenient that made it super easy to enjoy a healthy snack. Additional benefits of the soup: zero artificial preservatives, sweeteners, additives, cholesterol, and GMO’s; fiber from whole vegetables – never juiced or pressed;  certified Gluten-Free, Organic, Vegan and Kosher; loaded with 16 different vitamins, minerals and antioxidant; and every batch is made with hydrating coconut water, coconut milk, and virgin coconut oil that work together with filtered water to form the perfect alkaline base and bring balance and vitality to the body and mind.

An incredible power snack, Fawen is the perfect new soup to satisfy and nourish everyone who wants a boost of nutrition.

The soups are now available at in 6 pack and 12 pack cases. The collection is now rolling out to stores on the East Coast and available online: and

We were provided with samples for review. All opinions are our own.


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Book Review: Fitter Faster: The Smart Way to Get in Shape in Just Minutes a Day

fitter faster book

Working out is one of those challenges that we are all trying to figure out. We know that we are supposed to work out but the list of excuses (kids, no time, work, and so on) can rule whether we get our sweat in or not. We have been and are always looking for more ways to making exercise easier while still reaping the benefits. Tall order? Not so much, especially with the release of Fitter Faster: The Smart Way to Get in Shape in Just Minutes a Day, a new book by award-winning health journalist Robert J. Davis, PhD and celebrity fitness trainer Brad Kolowich, Jr, that is designed to provide you with tips to get in shape in as little as 15 minutes a day! Sounds amazing, right?!

We had the privilege of reading through this guide book, soaking in their easy-to-digest tips and step-by-step workout plans that highlight the aerobic, muscle-building, and fat-burning benefits that are similar to—or even greater than—what you’d get from much longer regimens.

This include high-intensity interval gaining, which alternates vigorous and gentler exercises in shorter hurts, with circuit training that works multiple muscles. Not only providing tips to work out your entire body, the book squashes the boredom aspect of working out where you can actually add in some much needed choice and variety to our routine!

Divided into four exercise programs (Get Ready, Get Smart, Get More Out of Exercise, Get Going), you’ll find a plan to help you tackle every aspect of working out. We really loved the Get Smart section that included tips on strength training, stretching and how to increase cardio.

A guide that’s all about shorter, more focused routines, Fitter Faster is a great way to revamp your thinking about working out with a guide that actually makes fitness fun, focused and really convenient!

For more information, please visit:

We were provided with a sample for review. All opinions are our own.

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Cookbook Review: Farm-to-Table Desserts: 80 Seasonal, Organic Recipes Made from Your Local Farmers’ Market

Farm-to-Table Desserts: 80 Seasonal, Organic Recipes Made from Your Local Farmers’ Market review

As much as we try to do our very best when it comes to eating healthy, we have to admit it: we have a huge sweet tooth! And while we are all about wholesome eats, we still want a treat every now and again, cause, really, life is too short to not have dessert! However, these days even desserts have upped their healthy game where you can now find tons of variations that even include vegetables in your beloved chocolate cake!

To help us learn more about healthier desserts, we’ve been soaking up the delicious goodness from the new cookbook Farm-to-Table Desserts: 80 Seasonal, Organic Recipes Made from Your Local Farmers’ Market. Written by Lei Shishak, an established pastry chef who trained at the CIA in New York and has worked at restaurants in Sun Valley and Los Angeles, the book features a guide to learning how to bake seasonally with a focus on locally sourced, organic ingredients featuring recipes that are better-for-you and the environment!

Featuring more than 80 sweet recipes, divided by season, we loved diving into this resource featuring yummy desserts using fresh and local ingredients, such as stone peach cobbler, fig jam, sweet corn panna cotta, strawberry hand pie, sweet potato cake, blood orange pot de crème, among many others! A clear and concise book, the recipes are also complemented by a gorgeous series of mouth-watering images that will have you longing to create some of  Shishak’s sweet treats. We were certainly inspired after reading this cookbook and tried out a few of the sorbets, including the incredible Navel Orange Rosemary Sorbet.

The cookbook also includes a clear explanation to better understand choosing organic and purchasing produce at your local farmers’ markets that serves as a straight-to-the-point read for anyone curious to learn more, or on the fence about using these type of products.

A must-have read for a home cook, Farm-to-Table Desserts is a fantastic guide for anyone who is looking to eat healthier and better understand how to shop local while still enjoying sweet treats.

Check out Farm-to-Table Desserts on Amazon, or at your local bookstore. 

We were provided with a sample for review. All opinions are our own.

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Healthy Start with Grain-Free GrandyOats

Healthy Start with Grain-Free GrandyOats

By now it’s safe to say that most of us have tried granola at some point in our lives. While this isn’t a new food, there are definitely variations of this classic breakfast option that covers a wide-range of choice! Hooray to advances in granola. The problem with some varieties are that they are loaded with added sugars that don’t always make this the best option to start your day. Along with the sugar-ladded varieties, there are tons of healthier options that even include grain-free varieties! We just had the chance to try out such a variety with the new grain-free Coconola line from GrandyOats.

Healthy Start with Grain-Free GrandyOats

As a company that has handcrafted granola since 1979 (along with muesli, trail mix, roasted nuts and hot cereals in rural Main), they recently introduced a new line of gluten free granolas with a base of coconut that’s been touted for it’s nutritional benefits such as for energy, fiber and healthy fats including MCT. This, along with the combo of the nuts, makes for a super healthy and powerful way to start your day.

Healthy Start with Grain-Free GrandyOats

We had the opportunity to test out a few of these new granolas and were amazed at how good they were without having any traditional oats in them. One of our favorites is the Original, Super Hemp Blend, a variety that contains organic: unsweetened coconut, cashews, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, pecans, sesame seeds, honey, maple syrup, and vanilla! Paired with some yogurt, blueberries and a drizzle of some of our morning smoothie made for a satisfying and incredible option for breakfast. This variety wasn’t too sweet and provided the right amount of crunch that paired amazingly with the variety of nuts in the granola. A seriously addictive blend, we’ve also been stashing them in our bags for a mid-day snack or to top on our salads and smoothies. It’s super versatile and incredible tasty that can easily be enjoyed throughout the day.

Additional varieties in the Coconola line include the Original Coconola and the Chocolate Chunk Coconola, a healthy and satisfying sweet treat made with rganic: unsweetened coconut, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut syrup, dark chocolate, sesame seeds, pecans, cashews, maple syrup and vanilla.

Additionally, all of the “oats” in the grain-free line are “certified organic, gluten-free and paleo; non-GMO; small batch; high protein; oil-free; salt-free; kosher; low sugar; and socially responsible,” as stated by Aaron Anker, Chief Granola Officer for GrandyOats.

And another cool aspect of the company is that their bakery is solar powered where they have 288 solar panels next to the bakery generate enough clean, renewable energy to produce millions of pounds of granola and offset over 145,000 pounds of greenhouse gases each year. With a focus on social consciousness, they source the most wholesome organic ingredients and partner with local, organic, and non-GMO producers. A fantastic granola from a company that cares, we fully support and love the incredible varieties from their new grain-free line, and think you will, too!

All 3 varieties of Coconola are offered in 9 oz. re-sealable pouches for a SRP of $7.99. A wide range of GrandyOats organic cereals and snacks in a variety of sizes are available nationwide at natural food stores, food cooperatives, major grocery chains, online retailers and

We were provided samples for review. All opinions are our own.

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First Ever Vegan Tri-State VegFest and an Interview with the Founder!

tri-state vegfest comes to the NY area

We just learned about an incredible vegan event coming to the NYC area with the first-ever Tri-State VegFest! Held at the New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center on Saturday June 17, 2017 from 12-6PM, the Tri-State VegFest is an entirely vegan festival that showcases plant-based cuisine and cruelty-free products that are part of a vegan lifestyle. This festival is all about food, community and entertainment and attendees will have the opportunity to experience over 100 national and local exhibitors.

tri-state vegfest

tri-state vegfest

Presented by Experience Expos, a multifaceted empowerment company founded by South Florida-based entrepreneur Kyle Michaud, there will literally be something for everybody at Tri-State VegFest including the best health-conscious food and beverages, children’s activities, happy hour wine sampling, live music, cooking demos and much more. The event will also be presented in a relaxed, enjoyable atmosphere where guests do not have to worry about asking about where food is from, as it’s a guarantee that everything is ethical and 100% vegan.

VegFest is a celebration of the health, environmental, and animal welfare benefits of a plant-based lifestyle. There will be vegan food to sample and purchase, engaging speakers, exciting performers, and members from the local vegan community to answer questions and showcase what inspires them. As a participant, volunteer, or attendee, your presence assists us to achieve our mission in educating as many families and individuals as possible about the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle.

National and local vendors participating at the Tri-State VegFest include:

• Harmless Harvest – Coconut water and organic tea
• Suja Juice – offers a variety of cold-pressed organic juices packed with fruits and vegetables.
• Daiya – give you the delicious joy of dairy, without any compromise.
• Rhythm Superfoods – an innovator in plant-based snacking. Rhythm’s organic, non-gmo, gluten free, vegan and vegetarian snacks are high in nutrient
• Hippocrates Health Institute – Committed to fostering a natural lifestyle complemented by enzyme-rich, living-foods vegetarian cuisine
• Nature Has Flavor – specializes in teaching flavorful whole food cooking recipes for a plant based diet lifestyle. Learn to plan beneficial vegan meals.
• Macro Vegitarian – carefully crafted vegan meals for people who are tired of boring choices such as grilled vegetables and cardboard veggie burgers.
• Vegetarian Society of New Jersey
• And others

And to learn even more about the Tri-State VegFest, we had the honor to speak with founder, Kyle Michaud to learn more about how it started and what you can expect.

Kyle Michaud: founder of tri-state veg fest

Wellness Patterns: How did the idea for the Tri-State VegFest come about?

Kyle Michaud: The Tri-State VegFest was born out of my love for food, and animals. The cruelty-free festival allows attendees to explore 100+ vendors that have made a commitment to being vegan. Unlike other events we welcome vegans and vegan wannabes to come explore the delicious and nutritionally dense entrees that are being served up!

Wellness Patterns: What about for families?

Kyle Michaud: We encourage families to attend, and we offer FREE admission to children under 12. In addition to food and education, the festival features booths promising to engage and entertain people of all ages and backgrounds.

Wellness Patterns: How did you get into wellness?

Kyle Michaud: I started a cold-pressed juice company in 2014 and soon discovered that reaching ‘green consumers’ was more difficult then I had anticipated! I become motivated to connect eco-conscious consumers with green products and services. The festival was born!

Wellness Patterns: What are your goals for the Tri-State VegFest?

Kyle Michaud: My goal in 2017 is to become the largest event of it’s kind, promoting a plant-based lifestyle to as many people as possible. We are aiming to attract over 12,000 attendees to come explore what everyone is talking about!

Tri-State VegFest Info

Saturday, June 7, 2017
12:00PM – 6:00PM
New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center
97 Sunfield Ave,
Edison, NJ 00837

Tickets are $15 for adults, children 12 and under are FREE. Tickets can be purchased at


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Incredible Plant-Based Body Lotion from Kneipp

Instant Relief from the Natural Body Lotion from Kneipp

We don’t know about you but as of late our hands and legs have been akin to sandpaper. Since the changing of the seasons and general dryness are definitely not winning combos we have been on the hunt for a body lotion that means business with no yucky chemicals. Enter the Kneipp Relaxing Body Lotion, a lightweight formula that works to provide nourishment and hydration to the skin. Containing plant oils, vitamins A, E and panthenol, this awesome lotion works to help the skin feel really soft and supple. And as bonus, it smells amazing thanks to the relaxing lavender.

Another favorite for our bods is the Kneipp Arnica Joint & Muscle Intensive Cream, a thick cream that contains natural ingredients of the arnica blossom to smooth the skin. Yes, please!

Being an oil-based formula, you don’t need all that much where you can work the cream into your skin, adding as needed. Personally, we love how it works instantly (seriously!), reviving our skin and making it feel soft and supple. Incredibly, this cream can also be used as a base for massages where you can work it into your back or legs, working to ease up any discomfort and stiffness.

And as a product from Kneipp, you can rest assured that the product contains no paraffins, silicons, and mineral oils, and of course, only contains plant-based ingredients. Founded by health and holistic pioneer Sebastian Kneipp in 1891, we are digging these products from Kneipp that work to nourish the body and soul.

For more information on Kneipp, please visit:

We were provided samples for review. All opinions are our own.

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Garjana: A New Immersive Dance Workout and Fundraiser in NYC

Garjana: A New Immersive Dance Workout and Fundraiser in NYC

Looking for a new way to get moving this year? Then you’ve got to check out the new immersive dance workout called Garjana at their upcoming event in NYC that will raise money for Food Tank, a nonprofit focused on building a global community for safe, healthy, nourished eaters.

Garjana: A New Immersive Dance Workout and Fundraiser in NYC

Held on April 26th, this fun event will include a one-hour completely immersive and interactive dance workout experience featuring original music, visuals, props, choreography, and lighting followed by a pop-up farmers’ market with free tastings.

At Garjana, five dancers, all Broadway performers, will lead attendees in easy-to-pick-up and fresh-looking synchronized dance moves, all set to original music and fully immersed in visuals specially created for the event. In addition to the class, participants will see short dance performances by Broadway Bodies, PMT Dance Studio, Liberated Movement and Fit4Dance along with a musical performance from Jambalaya Brass Band.

Garjana: A New Immersive Dance Workout and Fundraiser in NYC

Event partners include: the New York City Food Policy Center, the James Beard Foundation, Edible Manhattan, Edible East End, Edible Brooklyn, GrowNYC, WhyHunger, Rescuing Leftover Cuisine, Bronx Green Machine, Glynwood, Global Green, Change Food, Food-X, Food Future, NYC Bollywood Funk, Body Conceptions, Broadway Bodies, Dance Cardio Plus, PMT Dance Studio, Banana Skirt Productions, Liberated Movement, Fit4Dance, Jambalaya Brass Band, Where NYC, Stumptown Coffee, Beanitos, Go Raw, GT’s Kombucha, Gluten-Free Bites, Purely Elizabeth, Gotham Greens, Stonyfield, Icelandic Glacial, KIND Snacks, 88 Acres, and Harmless Harvest.

Following the event, participants can nosh and hydrate with a tasting of some of the hottest local brands in the New York City food scene. Rescuing Leftover Cuisine will be doing all food recovery for the event.


Garjana: A New Dance Workout Happy-Hour Movement

WHAT: One hour of interactive dancing (cardio-fitness) led by performers
WHEN: Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at 6:00PM (SHARP) to 7:30PM
WHERE: Highline Ballroom (431 W 16th St, New York, NY 10011)
Participants are encouraged to “dress to sweat” and can purchase tickets ($40 requested donation, $29 early bird pricing till April 20) at Doors open at 5:30PM. The event begins promptly at 6:00PM and will run roughly for one and a half hours.


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