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'Having Fun And Developing Community': Ninja Warrior Gym To Open In Downtown St. Paul

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) - As of Saturday, there's going to be a lot of action in downtown St. Paul.

A ninja warrior gym is opening up in the Treasure Island building as a space to work your body, mind, and spirit.

Minnesotan Dan Delano is a professional "Ninja Warrior" who has competed on national TV.

"You can get a great workout out of it while having a ton of fun," he said.

The new gym opens on Saturday. But the physical obstacles aren't the only ones the leaders behind it are trying to conquer.

Ben Utecht is behind the idea for the integrative space that houses Conquer Ninja Warrior Gym, but it took him a while to get where he is today. Utecht is a former Gopher and Super Bowl Champion.

The former NFL tight end said the first time he tried the ninja gym, he "fell flat on [his] face."

But he's got the swing of things now and is ready to launch the multi-faceted downtown St. Paul project with vision and soul.

"It's all about improving the human condition and if we can do that by crazy ninja obstacles and chiropractic adjustments, we are going to sell out to for this incredible St. Paul downtown," he said.

The space also has a standard gym where downtown workers can join for $25 a month - there's a chiropractic center through Finish Line Wellness and more wellness services offering physical and mental support - and they're launching a nonprofit to make sure all families can get in on the fun.

Former football player and social worker Jamál Gipson grew up in North Minneapolis and is heading up the non-profit wing called UNcoMN Champions.

He plans to help give kids and their families free and timely access to a place where they can not only play but can work out with local police officers.

"I want this place to be a place that can show what it can look like when you take people from different backgrounds and work together to build and focus on community," Gipson said.

It's a place where work and play collide.

"Having fun and developing community – that's my dream," Gipson said.

Conquer Ninja Warrior opens to the general public Saturday at noon and Sunday at 1:30 for $15 a person.

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