By Robert Kimmel—
After an occupancy of more than 100 years, the Family YMCA at Tarrytown is ending activities at 62 Main Street this month after selling the building.
“The numerous building challenges prompted our Board of Directors to authorize a capital needs assessment which determined that additional renovations to this aging facility were not feasible,” Chief Executive Officer, Gerry Riera, wrote in a message to members.
An emphatic point was made by Riera in answering a probable question: “No, the Family YMCA at Tarrytown is not closing and is committed to providing the same quality programs that we have for the past 116 years.” A number of those programs will await the Y’s securing a new location.
The date for the Y’s last day of operation at the Main Street location will be March 29. The date was determined only this week, according to Riera. The Y’s departure; however, came as no major surprise. The building was originally put up for sale in 2019. Riera described that pursuit as “an arduous process as the sale was contingent on a number of approvals at the local, county and state level.”
It was not until March 10 that the Y got word from the State Attorney General, approving the sale. Its non-profit status also required certain processes before the approval.
COVID-19 was the culprit impacting at least one aspect of the overall plans the Y had envisioned, Riera noted. The original intension was for the Y to quickly establish a new fitness facility. “However, over the course of 2020 the impact of COVID on the fitness industry has caused us to reevaluate this plan,’ Riera stated. Citing the experience of other fitness facilities, he wrote, “Our membership base has been greatly reduced due to the pandemic. It is down over 70% since last March.”
The Y will instead hold off on the planned reopening at a new location until “the majority of the population is vaccinated and feels comfortable returning to indoor fitness,” Riera asserted. “We will continue to offer virtual fitness classes and, as the weather improves, provide outdoor group exercise classes.”
He advised members to “Look for information about outdoor fitness opportunities.”
“Our Dance and Cheer programs will continue as well as our childcare services in an interim space at the EF, (Education First), Campus while we search for a permanent home,” Riera stated. That location is on Marymount Avenue. “Lap swimming will continue at EF until March 31st. Be on the lookout for expanded programming in the very near future.”
The Y is looking for a new location, where it “can continue to provide the same services we do today including our fitness, group exercise, aquatics, Y Early Learning Center (day care & after-school care), enrichment, cheer, dance and senior programs in a place where everyone is welcome!”
In its communication, the Y also explained, “The proposed new development at 62 Main Street will be beneficial for the Village of Tarrytown. It will offer affordable apartments to people 55 and over and will create 40 additional public parking spaces. Our current Y residents will continue to have a home and be offered subsidized housing in the new development.”