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ALTON - River Bend Yoga recently celebrated ten years of business in downtown Alton with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The yoga studio, located at 100 W. 3rd Street in Alton, offers over 100 yoga classes every month. Owner Vicky Delaney expressed how much she enjoys being in downtown Alton and sharing her yoga practice with the community.

“The downtown community has embraced us so much,” Delaney said. “They’re just fabulous to us, and we are hoping that we can provide that safe, warm, welcoming space for the community to come in, help ease anxiety, help get people fit if that’s what they’re looking for. Yoga has so many values and it does so much for the body, the mind and the spirit.”

Delaney opened River Bend Yoga in 2014. Over the years, they have expanded and can now offer three classes simultaneously, from aerial yoga to power flow to hot yoga and more. The building also has a lending library and a lounge, and Delaney donates space to a few local vendors who don’t have brick-and-mortar locations. For her, it’s all about helping the community.

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And there is quite the community at River Bend Yoga. Manager Emily Weller noted that the students and teachers have formed friendships over the past ten years. Weller teaches aerial yoga and loves to watch her students develop the skills they need to be successful. For her, it’s much more than a job; it’s her life.

“We have a great community of students,” Weller said. “I love seeing these people grow and feel empowered every time that we leave class…This place is a home. It really is. We built a community and everybody here loves it. It’s warm. It’s welcoming. We’ve made it a home.”

Weller will take over River Bend Yoga when the time comes for Delaney to retire. But Delaney doesn’t plan to step away any time soon. She enjoys teaching yoga and sharing the experience with the students and teachers who have made River Bend Yoga into the community it is.

“I love seeing people come in and be a little skeptical and then leave and say, ‘I’m coming back next week.’ I love it,” Delaney added. “And I just love the people and I love the family members that I have, and that's what my teachers are. They’ve become family. A lot of my students have become teachers, and they’re just very special. I feel loved and supported every turn of the way.”

For more information about River Bend Yoga, visit their official website at RiverBendYoga.net.

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