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After 45 minutes of bending and stretching your body, focused on breathing and body technique, there is apparently nothing more refreshing than a Summer Shandy.

Or Snowdrift Vanilla Porter. Or Northwoods Lager. Or whatever your brew of choice on tap at the Leinie Lodge turns out to be.

Latitude 44 Yoga Studio out of Eau Claire brought its Destination Yoga series to the Leinie Lodge Wednesday evening, filling the event to maximum capacity with about 50 people. Yogis, beer enthusiasts, and yoga and Leinenkugel’s novices alike were invited by the yoga studio and the lodge to participate in a yoga session and beer tasting, each included in the price of admission of $15 for members and $12 for non-members.

Teacher and Latitude 44 owner Amy Erickson said the destination events are geared toward anyone interested in yoga, regardless of where their skill level may be. Erickson added people may feel more comfortable trying yoga for the first time outside of a studio and in a public, community-centered space.

Erickson said nerves, though common, are unnecessary.

“There’s this misconception that you need to know how to do yoga before you walk into a yoga studio,” Erickson said.

As she prepped the class to begin on Wednesday, Erickson let participants know that they should only do what they feel comfortable doing and pushing themselves to. Participants were invited to stay in the first pose (laying on their backs) the whole time if that’s what they felt most comfortable and relaxed with, Erickson told her class.

Open for the last three years, Latitude 44 has been taking its regular yoga members — and newcomers who join in — to destination yoga spots once per month, most of the time getting a great response, Erickson said.

“They love it. Every time we go anywhere we usually sell out,” Erickson said, estimating Wednesday’s event was the eighth time the studio had been to the lodge. “They enjoy being able to take it outside of the studio.”

UW-Eau Claire students Meredith Watson, 22, of Goodhue, Minn., and Elizabeth Reynolds, 21, of Hayfield, Minn. were at the lodge Wednesday evening as part of an activity they enjoy doing together.

“We’re friends, and we both like doing yoga…,” Watson said about why the duo came to the event Wednesday.

“And the beer,” Reynolds said, as both laughed.

Watson had been to the Leinie Lodge in the past, and takes classes at Latitude 44, joining the studio on a previous outing to the lodge. The class on Wednesday was Reynolds first destination class and trip to the lodge.

For the Leinie Lodge, hosting events outside of their normal beer-tasting adventures is common, said lodge general manager Lindsey Everson. The lodge also hosts other events, such as painting with Cheers Pablo, Everson said.

The events bring out couples and those who may not otherwise think to visit the Leinie Lodge, Everson said, introducing them to both a community activity and landmark.

“(It’s a) great way to introduce Leinenkugel’s and our experience that we have in Chippewa to folks that otherwise might not have a reason to come out,” Everson said.

As for where Erickson will take her studio to next, Latitude 44 has yoga adventures planed across the Chippewa Valley this spring, including a May event at Lake Wissota State Park.

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Samantha Stetzer is a community and city reporter for the Chippewa Herald. Contact her via email at or call her at 715-738-1610.

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