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For Immediate Release

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Brantford – At 5:30 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 14, the doors to the Laurier Brantford YMCA will officially open, providing members – including students from the Brantford campuses of Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College – with access to the newly built facility. Recognizing the great community interest in the project, Laurier and the YMCA will host open house events on Friday, Sept. 14 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and on Saturday, Sept. 15 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. to showcase the four-level structure’s amenities. Guests can enter via either the Colborne St. or Water St. entrances.

“We know that there is a lot of excitement and curiosity around this building, so we want to make sure everyone has a chance to take a look,” said Pat Kitchen, general manager of the new facility. “Throughout the construction process, people in the community have literally watched this building come out of the ground. We look forward to welcoming everyone to see the finished product.”

Kitchen describes the weekend’s open house as a “soft” opening.

“An official grand opening celebration is being planned for later this year, but we are thrilled to finally open the doors and welcome the community.”

“Opening the doors on Friday is just the beginning,” said Jim Commerford, President and CEO of the YMCA of Hamilton I Burlington I Brantford. “This is truly a game-changing addition to Brantford and its surrounding communities, and will usher in a slate of new possibilities for health, wellness and social connectivity.”

An atrium wall in the Water St. entrance to the new Laurier Brantford YMCA recognizes major donors to the project.

“That wall says so much about this initiative,” said Commerford. “It’s a facility for the community, that was made possible in huge part by the community. Individual and corporate donors – including those named on the wall and countless others – all believed in this partnership, and along with all three levels of government, invested alongside the YMCA and Wilfrid Laurier University to make this vision a reality.”

This partnership between the YMCA and a post-secondary institution is believed to be the first of its kind in North America. 

“The value of this facility for our students can not be overstated,” said Heidi Northwood, interim senior executive officer at Laurier’s Brantford campus. “The need for enhanced athletic and recreation opportunities is something our students have been requesting for some time now. The students have been counting down the hours for the opening since they returned this September.”

Among the features open house guests will have the chance to see are:

  • Aquatics Centre with two tank pool for lane swimming, swim lessons, aquatic fitness and therapy, plus an on-deck hot tub for teaching, fitness, therapy and leisure.
  • Five inclusive member change rooms, which include: Family/Universal Access, Adult General Male and Female, and Adult-Only Male and Female change rooms, plus four team change rooms for Laurier Athletics and other special events.
  • Child-minding area.
  • Youth Zone for recreational, social and leadership development programs.
  • Double gym designed for sports and competition with retractable stadium seating for 860 people, plus taping and first aid room for event athletic therapists.
  • Single gym for drop-in sports and larger programs.
  • Fitness Centre with state-of-the-art stretching, small group training, cable machines and cardio equipment with Wi-Fi capabilities for fitness programs and access to apps.
  • Health intake consultation rooms for specialized community-based health care programs in partnership with Hamilton Health Sciences and Brant Community Healthcare System.
  • Three studios for a large variety of group fitness classes, including Cycle Fit and dance.
  • Multi-purpose spaces for social, educational and cultural programming.
  • 3,498 square foot strength area for strength equipment, pin loaded and free weights (2.5 to 100 lbs).
  • Student Lounge for group work and socialization.

Members enjoy two hours of free parking at the parkade, which is linked to the Colborne St. entrance via a pedestrian walkway. Information regarding membership, aquatics lessons, fitness class schedules and more can be found online.

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Media Contacts:

Beth Gurney, Associate Director: Communications and Public Affairs

Wilfrid Laurier University - Brantford Campus

T: 519.756.8228 x5753

Kyla Kumar, Regional Vice President, Marketing and Communications

YMCAs of Hamilton I Burlington I Brantford, Niagara and Oakville

T: 905.529.7102 x7311


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