In 2016, the Morris Community YMCA celebrated many milestones with its members and the residents of Grundy County. Over the past year, we marked the first anniversary of our joint facility with Morris Hospital and were recognized as the best health and fitness club in Grundy County.
In addition, we expanded the number of programs we offer across the county by adding a second site for summer day camp and growing our before- and after-school Kid Zone program by serving families at Saratoga Elementary School. Thanks to the generosity of our annual giving campaign donors, we were also able to support more adults, children and seniors through our YMCA scholarship program.
In December, we shared perhaps the biggest milestone of the year: the land announcement for the home of our future full facility YMCA.
To say that we had a full year of activity is an understatement. With 2017 well underway, we are dedicated to carrying this momentum forward and introducing even more programs and services to the community.
Following the celebration of our second anniversary on Jan. 5, the Y unveiled new programs for both small group training and group exercise classes with the addition of Strength Train Together, and a new cycling and fitness format. The decision to add these new classes was in direct response to feedback from our members, who were looking for more challenging workouts.
The beginning of the New Year also ushered in a brand-new membership model at the YMCA. To ensure that our memberships are designed to meet the needs of the communities we serve, we now have seven different membership types for prospective members to choose from.
The month of January features our $0 joiner’s fee, so it’s a great time to stop in and learn more about YMCA membership and to tour the facility. For a sneak preview, be sure to check out our virtual tour by visiting www.jolietymca.org.
While we are always working to introduce new programs and services at locations throughout Grundy County, we also remain dedicated to nurturing the programs that have helped to establish our footprint in the community.
Our youth basketball league is entering its 12th season in Morris, and its third year in Coal City. More than 500 children are participating in these two leagues, learning the fundamentals of the game and the importance of good sportsmanship and teamwork.
These programs would not be possible without our dedicated volunteer coaches and generous league sponsors. Our Youth and Family programs, including Kid Zone and Summer Day camp, are stronger than ever and we look forward to growing them and serving even more families in 2017.
We’re looking forward to another impactful year in Grundy County and ask for your continued support along the way by sharing how we can better serve your family. I encourage you to stop by for a visit anytime. We are your #hometownymca and look forward to working together to strengthen our community.
• Missy Durkin is the executive director for the Morris branch of the Greater Joliet Area YMCA. Community Pulse is a weekly column that provides a dedicated space for Grundy County-area nonprofits, schools, organizations and sometimes Morris Herald-News staff to share news and information about their organization.