By Shereen Siewert

The Woodson YMCA, closed since March 17 amid the coronavirus pandemic, will reopen both Wausau-area branches beginning Monday, June 1 using a phased approach, the organization announced Friday.

The phased reopening will be conducted with the recommendations of state and local health authorities.

“When we closed our facilities in March, we did so to protect the health and wellbeing of all our staff, volunteers, members and participants. As we now reopen our facilities, we do so with that same commitment to keeping everyone who enters our doors safe,” said CEO Bryan Bailey.

 “We are thrilled to begin safely reopening our facilities, welcoming back our members and the community, and getting back to what we do best – helping everyone reach their full potential.”

To prepare for reopening, both YMCA locations will follow best practice guidelines from health experts and local officials to ensure safety, the YMCA news release stated.

The following procedures have been announced:

  • In addition to enhanced cleaning protocols, staff who work closely with members will have access to personal protective equipment, masks and gloves.
  • In wellness centers, staggered equipment will be available to maintain continuous social distancing of a minimum of 6 feet.
  • Through Phase 1, advance registration for tracks, pools, cardio centers and strength centers will be required in order to monitor space and limit building capacity.
  • Members will be provided with sanitizing kits upon entering to use on all equipment for each visit.  
  • Staff will enter Y facilities through a separate entrance and answer health questionnaires before beginning work shifts.  

According to Bailey, the first phase of reopening will have modified hours and will provide member access to lap swimming, cardio and strength workouts and use of our indoor tracks, all pre-scheduled in 45 minute appointments.

Virtual exercise programming will continue for members who choose to stay at home in the coming weeks.  

Additional facility and program areas will be phased in throughout the summer.