The Plattsburgh YMCA is a community asset, having contributed to our health and well-being for an amazing 125 years. Now, the community can give back by supporting the Y’s capital campaign.
The YMCA needs to raise $125,000 to ensure it can continue to offer its popular on-site programs and remote camp experience. Executive Director Kevin Killeen said the money will be used to improve the YMCA building on the corner of Oak and Brinkerhoff streets and to bolster the Bright Beginnings child-care program in Plattsburgh and Camp Jericho in Altona.
Many local people can look back on fulfilling experiences with the Plattsburgh YMCA over the years. Some, as children, learned to swim there. People may have worked out in the weight or cardiac rooms or bounced to Zumba or other fitness classes. Some may remember attending babysitting courses, child care or special events at the downtown building. And many locals spent happy summers outdoors at Camp Jericho.
Anyone who has been inside the YMCA, which was built in 1907, will know that it would benefit from an expansion. The plan is to add more than 800 square feet of space to serve the 2,500 people who use the facility each year and to add a better, more environmentally friendly heating system.
Camp Jericho, which hosts children age 5 to 13 for summer sessions, will be enhanced by a waterfront expansion and other upgrades. Groups of around 100 kids spend their days in the sun, engaged in outdoor activities that will keep them fit and acquaint them with nature. Children get bused from the YMCA for a day of hiking, canoeing, soccer, games, stories or whatever fun the staff has planned. Older kids have the opportunity for overnight stays. These are experiences that will stay with these children forever and will help develop a love of the North Country’s natural assets.
Bright Beginnings day-care center, located on the former Plattsburgh Air Force Base, will also benefit from the fund drive. Everyone knows how important good child-care services are in enabling parents to work without stress.
YMCA Board members and staff have shown their loyalty to the facility by donating the first $25,000 toward the drive. It will be chaired by Dr. Charles “Chuck” Paepke, who, himself, has been participating in YMCA programs for 32 years. He’s an engaging person, whose friendly manner will be an asset to the effort to secure the remaining $100,000.
YMCA offerings are open to all, the benefit of membership being that you pay a reduced price for use and programs. This is not an exclusive club; it is a facility with a long history of promoting fitness and stimulating minds.
The community can say thanks with a donation to the capital campaign.