GRAND OPEN­ING

Grand open­ing of Mem­ber­tou YMCA drew a crowd

Cape Breton Post - - FRONT PAGE - BY JEREMY FRASER jeremy.fraser@cb­post.com

YMCA of­fi­cially opens at Mem­ber­tou Sport and Well­ness Cen­tre.

Af­ter get­ting a stent in his heart a year ago, Shelly Fer­ney­hough knew it was time to take bet­ter care of him­self.

“I never drank, I never smoked in my life, but I never looked af­ter my­self ei­ther,” said the 66-yearold. “I had no other choice — it’s ei­ther that or keep go­ing, eat­ing ev­ery­thing that’s on the table.”

Fer­ney­hough, a Bras d’Or res­i­dent, was part of the grand open­ing of the YMCA branch at the Mem­ber­tou Sport and Well­ness Cen­tre on Wed­nes­day.

The fit­ness cen­tre opened at the end of Novem­ber, how­ever the grand open­ing and rib­bon­cut­ting cer­e­mony was held in front of more than 50 peo­ple in­clud­ing YMCA Canada CEO Peter Dins­dale. Fer­ney­hough said go­ing to the gym has been a life-chang­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

“It’s a state-of-the-art fa­cil­ity that has ev­ery­thing you need right here — you start feel­ing bet­ter about your­self and you get a lit­tle more flex­i­ble,” he said. “It’s the great­est thing since slice bread.”

The YMCA of Cape Breton has three branches across the is­land in­clud­ing Mem­ber­tou, Port Hawkes­bury and Syd­ney.

The gym is the only fa­cil­ity of its kind in the Mem­ber­tou com­mu­nity. The equip­ment was pur­chased by Mem­ber­tou First Na­tion and is val­ued at more than $250,000.

An­dre Gal­lant, CEO of the YMCA of Cape Breton, said the open­ing of the Mem­ber­tou fa­cil­ity was fairly easy.

“Our build­ing down­town, the Frank Rud­der­ham Fam­ily YMCA, was far more com­pli­cated from a num­ber of per­spec­tives,” he said. “This was a pretty easy dis­cus­sion, it didn’t take us long to come to a shared vi­sion for a cen­tre of com­mu­nity, a place to sup­port the health and well-be­ing of not just the pop­u­la­tion of Mem­ber­tou, but the com­mu­nity at large.”

Gal­lant said he doesn’t con­sider the fa­cil­ity just a gym.

“I think of this more as a well­ness cen­tre than a gym,” he said. “The word gym can be in­tim­i­dat­ing for some peo­ple. It gives an im­age of free weights and body­builders, and cer­tainly we can ac­com­mo­date peo­ple that want to do their per­for­mance train­ing here.

“Our staff are trained as per­sonal train­ers but for some­one who has never been phys­i­cally ac­tive, this is about get­ting health­ier, about get­ting well, about im­prov­ing sleep as well as re­duc­ing blood pres­sure, weight loss and all those things that help off­set chronic dis­ease.”

The Mem­ber­tou branch has a to­tal of 538 mem­bers, 329 of those are from the Mem­ber­tou com­mu­nity.

The fa­cil­ity also shares 11 per­sonal train­ers with the down­town Syd­ney lo­ca­tion.

Bill Cor­bett, who also par­tic­i­pated in the grand open­ing of the fa­cil­ity, said he en­joys go­ing to the gym.

“It’s bet­ter then sit­ting around watch­ing tele­vi­sion,” said Cor­bett. “You feel a lot bet­ter when you get out and do some ex­er­cise.” Cor­bett said he use to sit around watch­ing TV through­out the day and go for naps, be­fore he started the gym.

“Af­ter work­ing out, I find I have more en­ergy,” he said.

The Mem­ber­tou gym is open to the com­mu­nity with a sin­gle YMCA mem­ber­ship can be used at all three Cape Breton YMCA lo­ca­tions.

The Mem­ber­tou fa­cil­ity is open Mon­day to Fri­day 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., and on the week­end, Satur­day and Sun­day, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

JEREMY FRASER/CAPE BRETON POST

More than 50 peo­ple at­tended the grand open­ing of the Mem­ber­tou YMCA branch on Wed­nes­day. The event lasted about an hour with a rib­bon cut­ting wrap­ping up the cer­e­mony.

JEREMY FRASER/CAPE BRETON POST

Shelly Fer­ney­hough works out at the YMCA branch at the Mem­ber­tou Sport and Well­ness Cen­tre on Wed­nes­day. The gym opened at the end of Novem­ber, how­ever the grand open­ing was held on Wed­nes­day.

Gal­lant

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