The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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August 23, 2012

The journey begins on Move-in day (photo gallery)

MANKATO — When Laura Klock’s daughters put on their motorcycle racing helmets and get ready for a race — one that will test all the skill and knowledge they have about the sport — Klock has a ritual.

She kisses them on the helmet and tells them to remember all the things she’s taught them about racing. Do this, she tells them, and they’ll be OK.

On Thursday, Klock watched one of her daughters set out on a very different kind of race. But the sentiment was the same.

The family, which bonds together in its spare time by racing motorcycles at 195 mph on the Salt Flats near Salt Lake City (true story, check out kustombaggers.com,) came to Minnesota State University to drop off the youngest, Karle, who will begin her freshman year Monday.

“It hasn’t really hit me yet,” said Klock, sitting anxiously on the boulevard near the Preska Residence Community near a pile of Karle’s duffel bags and must-have electronic devices. “It was weird packing her stuff up last night.”

Karle and 2,700 other students lugged their stuff into residence halls Thursday in the annual rite of fall. But just as students arriving at college is a rite of fall, so is that scene that plays out thousands of times all over campus on move-in day: parents saying goodbye to their children and letting them go off to a world full of strangers and new experiences.

Karle is her baby. Klock said it’s been slightly different this time around. She’s a veteran to sending a daughter off to college. Her oldest, Erika, left three years ago. But she chose to attend college in their hometown of Mitchell, S.D. And when she left, Klock still had a daughter under her roof.

The feeling is different. She hopes the transition goes well for Karle.

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