OTTAWA — Putnam County YMCA is celebrating 15 years this month of being at its Putnam Parkway location in Ottawa.
Prior to moving to the location in February 2005, the YMCA was housed in downtown Ottawa in part of the building where Small Town Bliss Photography is now located. The YMCA previously rented out gymnasiums to run the Y’s basketball program in Columbus Grove and Leipsic.
Aaron Baumgartner, YMCA CEO and executive director, has served in the role since May. He said in 2003, Y officials decided to build the new facility.
“They knew they had outgrown the usefulness of the previous space that they had rented. They really wanted a center where the community could come together,” Baumgartner said. He said there was a need for an indoor pool that the existing facility offers. Y swim team members previously were required to travel to use pools to practice.
Several activities and improvements to the Y have been planned to help celebrate the milestone.
A cardio drumming class will from 8:30 to 9:20 a.m. Friday. A community day will be from 1 to 5 p.m. March 1 where the gym, exercise equipment and swimming pool will be open for free.
Y goers can expect new equipment, community programs and renovations to the Y this year to celebrate the 15-year milestones, according to Baumgartner.
“We saw that it is our responsibility to improve the community that we are in. This is an opportunity to do that and open our doors to the public where they can see the Y is more than just a place to work out,” Baumgartner said. He said the Y is a family-friendly community of young, old and anyone in between who gather in a safe place to improve their health.
“It has been a great experience being here. People come in and are happy to be here and realize its importance,” Baumgartner said. He added it is exciting to see whole families come through the Y’s doors and be connected to the Y’s services.
The Y offers volleyball and basketball teams for youth and has been a place where voting and blood drives have been held that has served as a community-focused center, according to Baumgartner.
An after-school program, summer camp and second grade swim program offering swimming to 13 schools at no cost is available at the Y. A Silver Sneakers program for seniors is an option.
Exercise classes range from yoga, spin, cardio and total body bootcamp.
The Y opened its 24/7 Mercy Health Fitness Center in December 2019 that Baumgartner said has been popular.
“The center has been a great success with almost 10% of our members using the 24/7 facility,” Baumgartner said.
The Y currently has 3,500 members and employs four staff with up to 120 during the summer months. A membership to the Y allows access to the pool at the Y in addition to Ottawa, Columbus Grove and Leipsic pools.
People can visit the Y’s Facebook page for announcements on upcoming celebration events at Putnam County YMCA.
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.