Sherri and friends

Ready to Rumble

A mega-watt sound system blares the latest beats; the overhead lights dim while syncopated LED lights create a rockin’ vibe.

Is this the description of a trendy nightclub? No, it’s Rumble Boxing North Loop in Minneapolis.

“I’ve never worked so hard in a 45-minute time period and enjoyed it,” said Rumble owner Sherri Bonacci, ’89. “The workouts go so fast.”

The atmosphere is a far cry from Sherri’s work in corporate America where she was a successful engineer for three decades. She is an inductee of the UND Engineering Alumni Academy and serves on UND’s College of Engineering & Mines Executive Advisory Board. 

During the pandemic, Sherri joined Club Pilates, a boutique fitness gym. She had been battling chronic Lyme disease for more than 10 years. She was “amazed” at how good she felt after the workouts.

That experience motivated her to seek a new career challenge in the health and wellness industry. After closing her engineering partnership, she learned that Club Pilates had moved onto a new boutique fitness concept – Rumble Boxing.

When I’m here, I don’t feel like I’m working. It just feels like I was meant to be doing this.Sherri Bonacci, '89

Eager to bring the concept to her city, Sherri began looking for commercial retail space for the first Rumble Boxing Gym in Minneapolis and in the Upper Midwest. Rumble opened its doors on Jan. 9, 2023.  

Sherri said every day is exciting – and busy. Alongside her core team of four, she juggles daily operations, engages in marketing efforts, and strives to build a strong community presence. She’s at the gym six days a week and feels like she found her calling. “When I’m here, I don’t feel like I’m working. It just feels like I was meant to be doing this.”

Reflecting on her first year as a gym owner, Sherri has learned the rhythms of the fitness market in Minneapolis. She was surprised at how empty the gym was in the summer. January, on the other hand, was bustling with activity. “I sold six new memberships just this morning,” she said on a very cold January day.

Sherri credits her engineering education at UND for providing the skills to have a career that enabled her to invest in the new arena. “It takes some financial fortitude, and I had that in place because of UND.” 

For Sherri, running Rumble is more than business; it’s about creating community. “Everyone who comes in here becomes a friend,” she said.  

The Rumble brand is starting to gain traction across the nation and Sherri said that extends to her gym where membership is growing. Seems Minnesotans are ready to rumble.