In order to highlight the amazing local businesses in Florida’s 47th District, the Anna For Florida campaign has launched “47 Means Business,” an ongoing blog series to spotlight local business owners in Lake Eola, Downtown Orlando, Winter Park, and throughout the district.

Our blog digs deeper into local businesses by collaborating with business owners to showcase their success and to identify what the legislature can do to support them. Together, these profiles come together to create a larger picture of the amazing diversity and ingenuity of local business owners that Anna hopes to serve and represent in the Florida House.

This week, we’re proud to have The Peaceful Peacock steal the spotlight as one of district 47’s high-quality companies making an impact. A community-oriented yoga studio on Curry Ford Avenue, The Peaceful Peacock seeks to cultivate wellness and balance among our friends, families, and neighbors under the guidance of owner and self-proclaimed “head peacock,” Katie Donzanti, who was gracious enough to share her experience with us.

Yogis unwind at the Hourglass District’s Peaceful Peacock studio.

Team Anna: What inspired you to start your own small business?

Katie Donzanti: I got really serious about yoga a few years ago. I thought about owning a studio several times, but I always talked myself out of it, thinking I could never do it. Occasionally, I would write down ideas for my imaginary yoga studio in a notebook, contentedly tucking them away in the pages. That changed in early 2017 when I lost a friend and mentor all too soon. I was confronted with how short life was, and I started really examining how I wanted to live it, and how yoga fit into that vision. I was motivated to build a studio in my part of town that would be a peaceful refuge for people to leave their stress or baggage behind, even if only for an hour. I wanted yoga to be inclusive, affordable, and fun.

TA: What is the most exciting part about owning and operating a small business?

KD: The most exciting part is developing this “flock” of sorts. There are different people from different backgrounds coming together to practice and work on their goals, and I’m lucky to have this space dedicated to cultivating those. It’s so exciting to see the small, meaningful ways we can collectively change the world. We host events to raise funds and awareness for pressing needs in our community, whether dedicated to animal rescues or school supplies, and that’s the first step in the change we create when we come together.

TA: Describe a perfect day at work.  

KD: The perfect day starts with preparing the space. I like to get to the studio early, before the first class of the day, and break out the Swiffer. There is magic in sweeping the floors of my own studio, preparing for a day full of classes and students. Then, there is magic in getting to be at the studio all day: checking in with the teachers, hanging out with the students, connecting with this community we are building.

TA: Are there any current policy issues impacting your business? If so, how?

KD: As a business owner, there are no issues that I am currently keeping a pulse-check on. As a member of this community though, I advocate for the safety and freedom of my neighbors and students.

TA: What could the legislature do better to help you thrive?

KD: The Peaceful Peacock is founded on a desire to help people, so I’d like to see some work on the gender pay gap, equality, teacher compensation, school funding, evaluating standardized testing, and elevating animal safety issues. Let’s make moves together!

For more information about unwinding at The Peaceful Peacock, click here.