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Area YMCAs strike deal to share facilities

December 20, 2011|By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. — The Hagerstown, Waynesboro and Chambersburg YMCAs have formalized an agreement that will allow the 16,510 members among them to use facilities at any of the three Ys.

Now, a Y member who lives in one community and works in another can use the fitness center in either location. The changes go into effect Jan. 2.

“We’ve looked at what opportunities we have to serve our members better,” said Alan Smith, executive director of the Waynesboro (Pa.) Area YMCA.

Across the nation, the Always Welcome at the Y program allows members to visit any of the 2,700 locations. However, they are limited in the number of visits they can make in one year.

The Hagerstown, Waynesboro and Chambersburg (Pa.) YMCAs went beyond that, trying to accommodate each other’s members as much as possible, Smith said. They sent members to other Ys when pools were closed for maintenance, he said.

“There’s just no reason for us to not open this up,” Smith said.

People are leading mobile lives and working farther from home, so they should have added convenience by being able to stop by the gym where they want, Chambersburg Memorial YMCA Executive Director David W. Matthews Jr. said.

“I think it’s a good step for the YMCAs as we try to service our members,” he said. “It’s just a sign of the times.”

The three YMCAs are all similar in their programs and facilities, Hagerstown YMCA Executive Director Mike Flicek said.

Their pricing structures are comparable and might be adjusted in the future to better align, Smith said.

Flicek said members visiting a different YMCA for the first time should stop at the front desk to register.

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