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Little City Crossfit bringing a new kind of family to Norwalk

LynAnne Vucovich • Nov 24, 2019 at 10:00 PM

Little City Crossfit is full of smiles and cheers as members make their way through a workout. Children are playing tag as their parents exercise. The gym is located at 29 N. Hester St., on the corner of Hester and Monroe streets, right behind Sheri’s Coffee House.

Danielle Sidell, a 2006 graduate of Western Reserve High School, is a professional Crossfit competitor. Sidell wanted to bring her sport home. She and co-owner Nick Helms opened Little City in June and can’t believe how fast the gym has grown.

“We have such great, supportive members,” Helms said. “One thing about Crossfit is the community aspect and we have such a good core group of people that love and support this place so much.”

Sidell said two members of the gym have lost more than 30 pounds each since joining in June.

“Word of mouth is spreading,” she said. “We just have fun.”

Carol Stoll joined Little City in June. She is 74 years old and can deadlift 165 pounds. She’s a grandmother to Sidell and is proud that three generations of women are working out together — Sidell, her mother and Stoll.

“I like lifting. It makes you feel better,” Stoll said. “It’s hard work but it’s fun, it’s a little addictive.”

Stoll said everyone in the gym is very supportive, like a “big family.”

“Everybody encourages one another; they don’t judge you. They’re there to make you better,” Stoll said. “If you can’t do it, they’ll show you an easier way of doing (an exercise).”

Travis Hipp started going to Little City a few weeks ago. He said it doesn’t matter a person’s age or physique, everyone starts the work out together and finishes together.

“When you first see it you think you can’t do it, but everybody here helps you get through it,” Hipp said.

Diana Weisenberger and her son Max, 11 years old, enjoy the fun atmosphere and think of the members of Little City Crossfit like another family.

“My friend I work with said it’s kid-friendly and no judgment,” Weisenberger said. “I wanted him to go with me because I think it’s a good idea to be in good shape. He likes to work out at home.”

Mother and son joined Little City the last week of October and Max said his favorite thing is “everything.” He enjoys the class so much, Max even attends alone when his mom is at work.

“Every time you do something new, everybody is like, ‘Great job!’ It gets me motivated,” Max said. “They’re all really nice.”

Weisenberger said she likes Little City because of the instructors and their help.

“They work with your body mechanics to make sure you’re doing it the right way,” Weisenberger said. “I love working out, but I never know how. It helps me feel good.”

Helms said everyone has been very supportive of the gym and his dreams are becoming reality.

“This is my dream,” Helms said. “I’ve thought about doing (this) since I was a junior in high school.”

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