About the Yoga Center Retreat

A Reality 20 years in the making

The Yoga Center Retreat was founded in 2018 by Jennifer Gray but the studio’s foundations were laid 20 years prior when Jennifer opened The Yoga Center of Minneapolis in 2000.

One of the first yoga studios in the Twin Cities and one of the longest running, The Yoga Center of Minneapolis (YCM) was home to some of the most sought-after yoga teachers in the city and was known to train the most prepared and professional new 200-hour and 300-hour yoga teachers. Jennifer owned and successfully ran The Yoga Center of Minneapolis for nearly 15 years. In 2014, she sold the studio to a local businessman to help grow and expand the thriving community. After the sale of the business, Jennifer stayed on as the program director and teaching, however, after two years, decided to pursue other dreams and goals and remained on as a teacher only to stay in relationship with the community.

Like a phoenix rising out of the ashes

When the Yoga Center of Minneapolis unexpectedly closed in 2018, the active community Jennifer had dedicated almost two decades of her life to was shut down. Students who had been enrolled in the Yoga Center of Minneapolis teacher training programs were left in a lurch and money was lost. It was a heartache for all. Gray was surprised by the response from  the YCM community. Many investors reached out to her offering to help in hopes that she would reopen. Humbled by the unexpected outpouring of support, Jennifer was faced with a choice: continue with her current path or come out of “yoga business retirement” and resurrect the community she loved so much.

Jennifer knew what to do next. She and 3 investors stepped up to open a new studio: The Yoga Center Retreat.

Built on 20 years of tradition and experience

The Yoga Center Retreat continues the tradition of educating the best yoga teachers in the Twin Cities using Gray’s time-tested yoga teacher training curriculum and offering the most eclectic and inclusive class offerings available in the Minneapolis area. Come join a vibrant and thriving yoga community where you and your practice belong.

The Yoga Center Retreat Leadership

Jennifer Gray | CEO and Program Director

Jennifer opened the Yoga Center of Minneapolis in 2000. A wife, a mother of three, a yoga teacher, public speaker, and a business woman, Jennifer feels truly blessed to be living a full and meaningful life.

Her passion and drive to create a space  where a whole community can gather, learn the tools and ancient teachings of yoga with uniquely qualified teachers and staff has been realized and continues to thrive and grow again. Jennifer has studied with many great yoga teachers and scholars of our time. She has written curriculum and designed programs for both the yoga community and her community at large. She feels blessed to be revitalizing and working in collaboration with her partner, as well as teaching students and training teachers. “I cannot believe I get to do this again, only this time with hindsight and a partner at my side. I am truly grateful.”

jennifer golden | Coo and co-owner

Jennifer is a wife and mother of two boys. Her professional career spans nearly 20 years as a digital strategist, where she has worked on websites for some of Minnesota’s largest corporations, including Best Buy and Target. In 2007 she dropped into The Yoga Center of Minneapolis for an Ashtanga class and knew immediately that she had discovered a new path in life.

Jennifer completed The Yoga Center Retreat’s 230-hour program in 2019 and has been teaching there since graduation. Knowing that she wanted yoga to become her life’s work, she approached Jennifer Gray about a partnership and became the co-owner of The Yoga Center Retreat in June of 2022. “It is a dream come true to have Jennifer Gray as a business partner and a career that combines my passion for yoga with my background in business.”