Construction set to begin next month on YMCA addition
WILLMAR -- Construction will begin next month on the $2.6 million expansion project at the Kandiyohi County Area Family YMCA, 1000 Lakeland Dr. S.E., says Theresa Wittenberg, executive director.
The 13,993-square-foot project will add exercise equipment space, a larger wellness center, two racquetball courts, an exercise studio and a new multipurpose gymnasium. The exterior of the addition will be of similar materials to blend in well with the existing building facade.
The YMCA opened in 2002 with 3,000 members and has more than 5,800 members today. The increased space will enable the Y to expand the number and variety of programs it offers, says Wittenberg.
The fundraising effort to pay for the project has so far garnered $2,132,840 from 564 donors and is $467,160 shy of the overall cost. Wittenberg said construction will begin while fundraising continues to reach the goal.
"We've got some grants that are out that we are waiting on,'' Wittenberg said. "We'll hold off on the gym until they get to the goal.''
Wittenberg said racquetball is a popular sport. The additional courts mean people will not need to drive out of town to play.
"One of the things the Y stresses is having people move more and eat wisely,'' said Wittenberg. "People say they want to get active and they like racquetball.''
Wittenberg said the Y has been active in the community during the past 10 years. Last year more than 400 volunteers helped with policy, subcommittees, youth sports coaches and mentor coaches.
"We're really looking to expand, provide more things for more people,'' she said. "There's always a great need there. The Y is really good at developing volunteers and helping with youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.''