THE NEW, OLD YOUNGSTOWN YMCA COMPLETES YEAR-LONG RENOVATIONS WITH SPECIAL FINISHING TOUCHES
YMCA Youngstown Ohio Renovation Celebration Picture – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
Youngstown Ohio – (Karen Kastner)
For Marykaye Carlson, no detail in the Youngstown YMCA
—the cornerstone of which was laid in 1911—is too small to warrant notice.
Downtown Youngstown Ohio YMCA Floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking downtown Youngstown add new light to areas of the renovated building on Champion Street Picture. – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
On a whirlwind tour of the newly renovated downtown building, Carlson, who is director of development and marketing, pointed out major features such as the new exercise rooms with floor-to-ceilings views of the downtown from the vantage point of 17 N. Champion St. and cheerful new lobby with wooden floors and orangish furniture with a retro flair. Of the latter, she said beaming, “I picked it out myself.”
Youngstown OH YMCA close-up of the tile flooring with the special Mayan tile featured in the middle Picture . – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
She also held out swatches for new drapes to be made for and hung in the grand Manchester Room, choosing a lively textured rust to complement the original terracotta tile flooring the day after the ribbon cutting event Thursday, Jan. 19. Other antique Mayan flooring tiles, she pointed out, had bits of cobalt blue in them.
YMCA Youngstown Ohio salvaged skylight now serving as flooring in a sitting area Picture . – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
One of the new features in the $5 million renovation is a reading area whose flooring is an old skylight that had long been covered up but was unearthed and used by Gregg Strollo, project architect and a Y board member with a long history with the building.
The money to do the work, which took about a year, came from the City of Youngstown, several foundations and individuals. Carlson said the YMCA obtained the right to a New Market Tax Credit from the Western Reserve Port Authority to aid in the project as well.
At the ribbon cutting ceremony, Tom Gacse, president and CEO, said, “We’re not just a fitness facility; we’re a family.”
YMCA Youngstown OH pool the residents of Mahoning County know and love Picture. – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
All day, every day, there is a steady stream of people from every walk of life who exercise there, meet there with groups such as the Rotary, Kiwanis and Lions, take a wide range of classes and eat in the cafeteria. Groups of children clad in bright bathing suits can be seen splashing and playing from the observation window in the lobby.
It seems everyone smiles at the Y.
Youngstown Ohio downtown YMCA original bricks sooty from the area steel mills of days gone by Picture . – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
Beth Scheller, chief operating officer, said in an interview just before she left the building the day of the ribbon cutting, “In a building over 100 years old, we are excited for the renovation and for being able to serve the community even better!”
YMCA Youngstown Ohio eating area outside the cafeteria Picture . – Photo Credit / Karen S. Kastner
New programs she chose to highlight in the interview include those to prevent diabetes and to manage arthritis. Another new program is designed for cancer survivors, she said with obvious pride. And, she pointed out, new and varied fitness equipment (with brand new classes utilizing it) abounds in the new, old Y.
The old Youngstown YMCA emblem that adorns the walls set aside for awards Picture. – PHOTO CREDIT / KAREN S. KASTNER
Youngstown Ohio YMCA newly renovated lobby with its orange retro furniture Picture. – PHOTO CREDIT / KAREN S. KASTNER
YMCA downtown Youngstown Ohio original marble mantelpiece salvaged in the YMCA renovations in downtown Youngstown graces an eating area near the café Picture. – PHOTO CREDIT / KAREN S. KASTNER
YMCA Youngstown ornately plastered pillar in the Manchester room where the Youngstown area Rotary, Kiwanis and Lions organizations have met for many years Picture. – PHOTO CREDIT / KAREN S. KASTNER
Youngstown YMCA impressive new workout equipment abounds at the new old Y Picture! – PHOTO CREDIT / KAREN S. KASTNER