June 23, 2018
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YMCA looks to expand to Rockland’s waterfront

By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff

ROCKLAND, Maine — The Rockport-based Penobscot Bay YMCA plans to expand to the city with a fitness and day care center.

The YMCA has reached a lease agreement with Stuart Smith for the space at 12 Water St. formerly occupied by Amalfi’s Restaurant. Smith received approval on March 4 from the city to have a fitness center and day care center at that site.

“The Penobscot Bay YMCA is extremely excited about the opportunity to expand its services directly to the southern Knox County region,” Troy Curtis, executive director of the Pen Bay YMCA, said in a news release. “For years, the Y has been discussing and looking for ways to better serve the Rockland community. This opportunity has presented us with a way to do just that.”

If fundraising and construction are on schedule, Curtis said the YMCA center should be able to open on Nov. 1. After-school programming at the South School in Rockland and Lura Libby in Thomaston will begin Sept. 3 with the start of school, he said.

Before the expansion and lease become binding, however, the YMCA board has stipulated that $300,000 must be raised to pay for needed equipment and start-up costs. A $100,000 matching gift already has been pledged to the YMCA to stimulate giving and an early summer campaign to raise the remaining $200,000 is underway.

Services offered at the Rockland facility will include a state-of-the-art fitness center, indoor and outdoor exercise studios and a child care center to serve families with infants through preschoolers, according to the news release.

In addition, plans are underway to offer after-school programs with the community, cardiac rehabilitation services and LIVESTRONG, which is a free wellness program for cancer survivors, the YMCA stated. While a YMCA membership or day fee will be required to use the facility, that same membership will provide access to both the new Rockland branch and the existing Rockport facility.

The YMCA pointed out that its membership fees are income-based, meaning the rates are adjusted based on household income.

“This initiative fits the Penobscot Bay YMCA’s mission of keeping the Y accessible to everyone regardless of financial capacity and is anchored firmly in the Y’s commitment to social responsibility,” the news release stated.

If individuals have questions regarding this project or would like to receive information on ways to support the fundraising effort, the YMCA encourages them to call or email at 236-3375 or info@penbayymca.org.


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