The YMCA of Abilene celebrated 70 years of serving the Abilene community this week.
The Y opened downtown near where the Family Life Center is now, saidKathy Nygard, administrative assistant and the Y employee for more than 30 years. They had no pool at the time. They moved into one more building before acquiring the land where the Y currently stands in the 1960’s. Women started coming to the YMCA during the ’60s and ’70s but on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s no men were allowed since the women used the men’s locker room.
In the beginning of 2000, the Y remodeled because the pool heat pump was held together by duct tape and the community was ready for a remodel, Nygard said. The original pool still stands, but has been updated.
The Abilene Y offers an array of activities: water aerobic classes, senior social events, after school care, scholarships for individuals and families, lifeguard training, swim lessons and so much more. Nygard said members and employees come together in times of need. When one of their members lost his wife in a car accident, members made and sent cards and support.
“I’ve just seen the Y really, help the community a lot.” Nygard said.
Nygard said once she was filling a prescription at Walmart and someone recognized her from the front desk at the Y. She said this happens often and she just laughs and says, “Yah, I’m still there!”
For more information, http://abileneymca.org/.