INTERVIEW: Kim Fields back for more ‘Upshaws,’ a second wellness retreat

The long-time Atlanta resident espouses attainable goals focused around joy.
The Upshaws. (L to R) Mike Epps as Bennie, Kim Fields as Regina in episode 502 of The Upshaws. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2024

Credit: Courtesy of Netflix

Credit: Courtesy of Netflix

The Upshaws. (L to R) Mike Epps as Bennie, Kim Fields as Regina in episode 502 of The Upshaws. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2024

Atlanta director, producer and actress Kim Fields found the pandemic mentally draining and decided to focus on personal wellness. Unfortunately, she wasn’t thrilled with what she found.

“There were brands and platforms I felt weren’t connecting or resonating with me,” Fields said in a recent interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution by phone from Los Angeles, where she is shooting a new season of “The Upshaws.” “I’ve been a person of faith. I wanted to expand on that and deal with my mind, body and spirit in a different way.”

Her answer was creating her own lifestyle brand Refresh by KF and a wellness retreat this past December at Evergreen Lakeside Resort in Stone Mountain for 125 people. “The resort is nestled away and it’s beautiful,” she said. “It just encourages that sense of giving yourself permission to be well. Once you make that decision, everything follows.”

The feedback from that first retreat was so positive, she decided to do a second one June 7-9 in the same location. Tickets are available at starting at $675 a night.

“The first one was amazing,” Fields said. “I was surprised how it resonated with people so deeply. A lot of people there had never been to a wellness retreat before.”

Indeed, she said she went out of her way to make it less intimidating for newcomers with a focus on fun.

“It’s open to everyone, men and women,” Fields said. “We have a dance party and a mixologist making mocktails. We have a nature walk. We do a sound bath, which isn’t actually in water but is an immersion of sound. We have a chief meditation officer from New Zealand.”

Fields said the retreat doesn’t define specific goals. “Some don’t have goals,” she said. “Some want to get away from the kids and sleep. Some just want to meet Kim Fields.”

She said this isn’t an experience where she just slaps her name on it and lets others do the work. She said she is so hands on, the resort gave her a nametag that says “Kim the Boss.”

“I am involved in all the logistics: the menu, the activations and experiences, our run of show, the swag, the flow of the entire weekend,” Fields said.

Before her focus on wellness, she tended to do too much. “I’m far more intentional about being protective of my mind and body and spirit, what I say yes to and what I say no to. It’s actually okay to be good selfish,” she said.

And she said she is much more mindful of her body. “I focus on my movement: swimming, walking, hiking and setting goals that are attainable and sustainable.”

Professionally, Fields’ career also remains healthy. She has now taken part in three successful sitcoms over four-plus decades: “The Facts of Life” (1979-1988), “Living Single” (1993-1998) and now “The Upshaws” (2021-present).

The Upshaws. Kim Fields Regina in episode 505 of The Upshaws. Cr. Lisa Rose/Netflix © 2024


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Her lead character Regina Upshaw juggles issues at work, a blended family, a difficult husband (Mike Epps) and an intrusive older sister (Wanda Sykes) who trades insults with said husband. It’s very much a traditional old-school sitcom with more cursing since it’s on a streaming service, not broadcast TV.

The latest six episodes came out April 18.

Fields is a consulting producer and directs some of the episodes as well.

The set, she said, “is a love fest. Mike and Wanda have been friends for decades. I met them for the first time on the show. But from our first meeting, it felt like home, the way we interact, the way we have each other’s back. We have such a good time.


“The Upshaws,” on Netflix