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Sherri Richards, Published May 29 2012

Women’s wellness expo reflects changes in Mikey Hoeven’s life

If you go

What: Mikey’s Women’s Wellness Expo

When: 7:15 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 11

Where: Ramada Plaza and Suites, Fargo

Info: Cost is $40. Advanced registration is suggested by June 1.

Online: http://mikeyswomenswellnessexpo.eventbrite.com

FARGO – Mikey Hoeven’s life of late has been marked by change.

She’s no longer North Dakota’s first lady. She moved homes in Bismarck, left her job, and got a place in Washington, D.C., with husband U.S. Sen. John Hoeven. Not to mention, she recently became a grandmother.

All these changes were an adjustment into a new phase of life, she says.

“What it taught me is life is ever-changing. We will all undergo major changes in life and that’s a good thing,” she says.

They also dovetailed into a deeply personal theme for the women’s health summit she organizes: “Where Do We Grow From Here?”

The event, to be held June 11 at Fargo’s Ramada Plaza and Suites, also has a new name, Mikey’s Women’s Wellness Expo.

This is the 19th wellness conference she has spearheaded, and seventh in Fargo. It’s typically a sell-out event, drawing hundreds of women.

Hoeven says women’s health is her passion. Because women are caretakers for their families, working to improve their health improves the health of entire communities, she says.

The June 11 speakers will weave the idea of growing in the midst of life changes into their presentations, she says.

Dr. Michelle May will speak on mindful eating. The Rev. Susan Sparks’ noon-hour presentation is titled “Laugh Your Way to Grace.” Brazil-native Chris Linnares of Fargo says her keynote address will encourage women to connect with their bodies and energize their lives.

Breakout sessions will address personal wellness, redecorating rooms, and personal stories of faith, loss and triumph. There are also 25 exhibitor booths.

Attendees will be educated and motivated, Hoeven says. “We want them to walk away with nuggets of information they can implement,” she says.

Linnares agrees the event speakers give practical tools. “It’s a moment for women to connect with themselves and learn more about themselves. And when you learn more about yourself, that’s when you’re able to truly grow,” Linnares says.

Linnares says she has attended Hoeven’s previous health summit events, and always left feeling energized and inspired. She credits Hoeven’s careful selection of speakers and direct involvement with the event.

Hoeven says while she has an event committee, she is responsible for all the details.

The night before this year’s Bismarck expo, Linnares says she saw Hoeven setting tables, barefoot.

“Her event is about women who want to be hands-on in their own life, like her,” Linnares says.