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VIBES to host its fifth Community Kindness event
Roy Koenig, Sports Analyst
sports wrap, roy koenig, owatonna, sports

VIBES Yoga/Cycling/Fitness is hosting its fifth annual Community Kindness event on Sunday, May 19, to benefit the United Way of Steele County. The workout on the lawn outside their studios includes fitness, yoga and meditation, along with a few goodies.

“We bring the community together. So, we’re trying to reach out to a couple of local businesses to partner with us, providing some refreshments and some things that attendees can take home with them. The primary goal of the Community Kindness event is to raise money for a local nonprofit. We usually do a week of nominations and then a week of voting to select the nonprofit each year. In the past, we’ve worked with the humane society. We’ve also worked with Beds for Kids and Steele County Clothesline. Every year it’s fun to see who the community wants to work with,” said co-owner Stephanie Hanson.

You’ll get coffee and a treat from Hy-Vee, and a gift from Souba’s and There’s No Place Like Home, plus a shirt from Steele Threads. If you can’t make it but want to support the cause, you can still get a shirt plus flowers. The cost is $55.

Hanson says VIBES hosts other unique events during the year, including yoga at Souba’s in March.

“We’ve done that for several years now. They clear out the main floor of their greenhouse and create this beautiful, warm space for us to come in and do our yoga classes,” said Hanson.

In January 2023 Solid Studios went through a rebranding to VIBES (Vitality, Inspiration, Balance, Empowerment, Soul).

“We really wanted our name to capture what we’re trying to do here, what we’re trying to provide for our community of members. People were really excited about it. They thought it was cute. You can play off of ‘good vibes.’ But also, they really enjoyed knowing that there was a deeper meaning behind the word as well,” said Hanson.


College lacrosse

College lacrosse is becoming an option more often for Owatonna student-athletes. Several seniors have plans to take their passion to the next level.

Madie McGinn started in the sport 10 years ago as something to do when she wasn’t playing hockey.

“I tried it and then I kind of just continued playing it. Hockey was my main priority at that time, and I was playing year-round. It was just something to do in the spring and summer. But eventually, it led to more playing during the summer and off-season. And I just kind of fell in love with it,” said McGinn.

She committed to Division II D’Youville University in Buffalo, New York.

“I couldn’t see myself not playing, especially for the next four years. And I think going to into college with a team and with some built-in friends, that you’re going to be able to push each other and learn from each other is a great aspect,” she said.

She toured the school, met with players and the coach, and found it to her liking athletically and academically. She plans to study exercise science.

“It’s huge. That is a big accomplishment. She’s worked very hard to do it,” said Owatonna girls lacrosse head coach Dani Licht. McGinn scored her 100th career goal in a win last week at Mankato.

Licht is thrilled that Halle Oldefendt will continue her career as well.

“I’m really excited that she’s going to play club at Winona State because that’s where I played,”

said Licht.

“I’m excited to have fun. Club is serious but not as serious as going D-I or D-II. And just to meet new people, meet new friends, and grow my passion for lacrosse,” said Oldefendt. She will study pre-law.


Bison lacrosse

Ethan Fitch is new to lacrosse, playing in just his second season. He’s adapted to it quickly and will play club with North Dakota State University. He told Todd Walkingstick on Owatonna Live’s “Beyond the Game” that he went to his younger brother’s games a couple of years ago and thought, “That’s kind of interesting.”

So, he went to Lincoln School and threw a ball against the wall.

“Just to maybe prepare myself for the season. Because I didn’t know if I was going to join, but I was thinking about it. So, I practiced probably about every day, just for 30 minutes. Then I’d shoot with my brother, pass with him,” said Fitch.

Fitch’s hockey teammates convinced him to join the team. He had to get used to a long pole after initially practicing with a short one.

“It’s hard controlling at first. It took a little bit for me to get used to it,” he said.

An early varsity memory is guarding a Mankato West player who is also going to NDSU, but to play football on their offensive line. Fitch held him without a goal.

“That’s when I started getting more playing time,” said Fitch.

Then he reached out to the Bison. “I sent them my film. When they accepted me, I’m like, ‘All right, I guess I’m going to play for NDSU.”


Baseball and BBQ

Owatonna’s Youth 1st is hosting another round of Baseball and BBQ on Thursday, May 16, and Friday, May 17, at Cash Wise Foods. Enjoy some BBQ ribs while supporting the Youth 1st Team Awards program and Owatonna Parks and Recreation Youth Scholarship Fund. Register for Minnesota Twins prizes too.

Free delivery is available on orders of ten or more. Call or text Mark Arjes at 612-968-9192. Baseball and BBQ runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day. play-by-play schedule

Thursday, May 16
JV/varsity OHS softball vs. Albert Lea, 5 p.m./7 p.m.
JV/varsity OHS girls lacrosse vs. Northfield, 6 p.m./7:15 p.m.

Friday, May 17
OHS baseball vs. Marshall, 5:30 p.m.
Medford softball vs. Maple River, 4:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 18
JV/varsity girls lacrosse vs. Apple Valley, 11:30 a.m./1:30 p.m.
JV/varsity boys lacrosse vs. Simley, 1:30 p.m./3 p.m.

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