MORRIS – The Morris Community YMCA invites Grundy County residents to take selfies with scarecrows, drink free apple cider and enjoy outdoor activities at the organization's first open house.
In conjunction with the Grundy County Corn Festival, the YMCA will host an informational event where residents can see the new facility and learn about upcoming programs.
"As we have a daily presence here in Morris, we wanted to take part in the largest event in Grundy County to let folks know we're here," Morris YMCA Operations Director Missy Durkin said.
The open house also will highlight new programs the YMCA plans to offer. Once settled at its new location, the YMCA will offer programs tailored to children and seniors and unveil new fitness and sports-related activities.
Durkin said the YMCA is particularly excited to expand the organization's youth basketball by offering it at a second location in Coal City.
"We'll have materials about that on Saturday," she said. "We're excited about that because it will hopefully attract more families to participate and help us reach other parts of Grundy County."
A branch of the Greater Joliet Area YMCA, the Morris YMCA found a temporary home in Morris in August after months of searching. Through an agreement with the City of Morris, the YMCA is leasing the former city hall building at the corner of Wauponsee and Jefferson streets.
The YMCA has offered multiple sports clinics and activities in recent years, but without a central location until now.
The building's interior is under construction as the YMCA makes renovations. Once completed, the facility will include multiple large activity areas and offices.
Because of the construction, Durkin said Saturday's open house will be confined to the outdoors. The YMCA plans to complete indoor construction by January 2015.
"After the new year, we plan to open our doors and offer programs and services, but until then, we wanted to get out, introduce ourselves and let every one know we're happy to be here," Durkin said.
The downtown location is temporary while the YMCA raises enough funds to build a new, permanent facility in Morris, potentially along Route 6.
IF YOU GO
What: Morris Community YMCA Open House
Where: 320 Wauponsee St., Morris
When: noon to 3 p.m. Saturday