Peggy Kiefer

Grove Sun

Volunteers from all areas of the community have come together to give the Grand Lake Family YMCA (the ‘Y’) in Grove a facelift to go with its new logo.

“The city owns the building but Grove City Manager Bruce Johnson has given us the okay to new paint inside and out, new carpet in the child care room and we will be getting a bigger sign with the new logo,” said Butch Christy, Branch Director.

According to Christy, these improvements are being done to prepare for the Open House on January 15.

"We are hoping to have 400 units by then,” he said. A unit is a membership by a single person or family. They need to reach 400 units to begin a Capital Campaign which is needed to raise funds for the new facility.

“The whole goal is to get 400 member units,” said Christy. Volunteers are painting and redecorating in order to attract more members.

“We have land that has been donated to us to build the new facility on, now we just need to begin raising funds so we can start building,” said Christy.

The new facility will include a large indoor pool with a hot tub, rooms for after-school programs and summer camps, plus everything else the ‘Y’ has to offer.

The ‘Y’ organizes and runs an after school program which is currently at the Elementary School because there isn’t space in the building they are in now. They also offer summer camps at the schools. Members of the ‘Y’ receive discounts to youth sports and activities.

“No one is turned away that can’t pay,” added Christy.

Financial assistance and scholarships are available. The ‘Y’ will host a Strong Kids Campaign in Feb. 2011 to raise funds to cover the costs of these scholarships.

“Debbie Bork is the interior design consultant who has really made this whole ‘Y’ make-over project work.  She has organized, called, procured free service and materials from her suppliers and contractors.  She has fired-up the volunteers and forced them to get off their rears and get to work for the ‘Y’” said Jim Conners, member and volunteer. “Without her help, very little of this would be getting done!” he added.  

Conners said, “It chokes me up to see the kind of wonderful response from the community and local merchants, how generously they have donated supplies and paint and how contractors have their supplied labor and materials.”

Mark Mare and Denise Anderson of Green Country Painting volunteered their time and equipment to paint the exterior on Tuesday, Nov. 9. Mare stated that he is “doing this because my son grew-up going to the ‘Y’ after he was injured in a BMX race when he was 13 years old."

Mare took his son to the local ‘Y’ for rehabilitation in New Jersey. He went on to continue racing after the rehabilitation. They moved to Grove two years ago.

“The ‘Y’ is a great place. I owe them something because it (his son’s rehabilitation) didn’t cost me a dime. Oh, and we need more pickle ball players,” he added.

Contributions have been donated by Debra Bork Designs, Th Rogers Lumber, The Wall Masters, Grove Paints, Lowe’s Home Improvements, Mill Creek Carpet & Tile, Grove Spring Homestead, Photography By Katherine, Patricia Island Golf & Country Club, Universal Signs and Green Country Painting

Guest passes for a week at the ‘Y’ are available. “Just show-up and we will give you a pass,” said Christy. “I tell anyone who doesn’t know where we are that we are behind Pizza Hut,” he added.