March 18, 2020

All YMCA of Metro North fitness facilities s are closed until April 6. On Monday, March 23, all Y Academy child care facilities will be closed until April 6.

If you have any questions, please contact us here.

With the Gov. Baker’s announcement today, we are closing all of our facilities and programs until April 6. We know how important the Y is to you and all the communities we serve. As we’ve said since the coronavirus first emerged in Massachusetts, your health and safety is our highest priority.

We will do everything we can to reopen our branches and Y Academies as soon as possible. We will also be sending you information on how to stay active and healthy while our branches are closed — including videos of virtual workouts, fitness tips, and more for you and your families.

This is an extraordinarily challenging time; unlike anything we have experienced. Our Y community is strong and connected. We will get through this together. And when we emerge from this challenging moment, we look forward to welcoming you and your families back through our doors.

Stay healthy, stay positive.

Kathleen Walsh
President and CEO

 

 

 

 

March 16, 2020

Dear YMCA Members and Families: 

Coronavirus prevention efforts have weighed heavily on all of us and threatened the strength of our thriving communities. On Sunday, Governor Baker called on all of us to very quickly do our part to stem the spread of the virus. This call to action has interrupted our daily routines and disrupted the lives and livelihoods of our YMCA staff and members.

In the Next Three Weeks

The YMCA of Metro North is working to be a positive force in our communities at this unprecedented time. While, our fitness centers will be closed from tonight until April 6, the YMCA is so much more than a gym. We are a vital part of our communities. In the next three weeks, we will be diverting our remaining staff resources to help the most vulnerable among us

In these three weeks, we will provide essential child care for 1,000 families many of whom can’t afford to stay home. We will build our capacity to serve 4,000 healthy meals to hungry kids. We will create new ways to engage our 2,000 senior members by encouraging them to stay active and fight the social isolation caused by the ban. These next weeks will make a big difference to many people.

 

Our doors will reopen soon, but in the next three weeks we ask you to join us in our efforts. Please consider continuing to pay your membership fee so that we can divert this revenue to support all our members and neighbors in need. Naturally, we will put your membership on hold, but if you can, please join us in service to others.

Staying Healthy and Staying Connected

We know your membership is meaningful to you and that meaning lies in the relationships you have built at the Y. Those relationships are based on a sense of social responsibility you share with others, and your commitment to being an active and healthy influence. Now, it’s more important than ever to be that positive force. That’s why we are announcing two initiatives focused on keeping you healthy, connected, and engaged, too.

Join us on Y360
Today, we invite you to immediately become part of a brand-new and exciting initiative, Y360, led by several YMCAs across the country. Y360 is foundational set of at-home group exercise classes for members. Y360 is free to everyone for a limited time. This is just the beginning. It includes Yoga, Barre, Active Older Adult workouts, Bootcamp and more led by some of the country’s leading instructors. Check out the videos online.

 

Enjoy the Great Outdoors
While we all need to keep a proper distance and safe interaction zone, the YMCA of Metro North is asking our members to join us in the great outdoors. We are looking to support hiking clubs, running clubs, adventure walks, outdoor Zumba, and other innovative ways for us to stay healthy together. You can let us know your health ideas, send your questions, or request programs and membership changes on our website.

As always, please take care of yourself and one another. Our community is strong, and together, we will get through this.

Stay healthy, stay positive,

Kathleen Walsh
President and CEO

March 15, 2020 7:20PM

BREAKING NEWS: GOVERNOR CHARLIE BAKER BANS GATHERINGS OF OVER 25 PEOPLE, YMCA of Metro North will close facilities to members effective Monday, March 16. Y Academy Child Care will remain open until further notice.

Due to the breaking nature of Gov. Charlie Baker’s restrictions on public gatherings, the YMCA of Metro North branches will now be closed by the end of business on Monday, March 16 until April 7. The Governor spoke at 7:00pm tonight. You can read information on his address here: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/03/15/nation/baker-closes-all-mass-schools-announces-restaurant-restrictions-bans-gatherings-over-25-people/

The YMCA of Metro North will send additional information on its closing by noon tomorrow. Y Academy child care and the Lynn Youth Center will be open this week as we determine our plans moving forward.  Please be patient as we adjust our operations and develop more information on our planning. We will not be able to answer your questions until noon tomorrow. Please refrain from phone calls to our branches until more information is available.

Thank you for your attention and we will be in touch by noon tomorrow.

Kathleen Walsh, President and CEO

 

March 15, 2020

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Adjusted Branch Operation Schedule & Spring Program Update

Your health and safety are our first priority. Out of an abundance of caution, the YMCA of Metro North has made the following changes to our facility operations and program schedules. While there is no confirmed exposure to the coronavirus in any of our branches, we are taking these precautions as a responsible and proactive approach to keeping our members and families healthy during this unprecedented time in our nation’s history.

In coordination with local officials and affiliated YMCAs in the region, we have carefully considered what safety measures to implement, while ensuring there are enough resources for the youth, teens, and families who need our services the most. You can access information about new schedules online or contact your local branch with questions regarding hours and scheduling.

Effective Until March 29.

Spring I Program Sessions will be paused.
On Monday, March 16, we are pausing all Spring I Program Sessions until March 29. During this period, we will evaluate restarting programs and schedule alternatives for each program.

Gymnastics Center in Saugus will remain closed until March 29.
We will evaluate our gymnastics program schedules and offer adjustments or alternative schedules during this additional two-week closure period. More information will be available before March 29.

Child Care at Y Academies.
Due to the large numbers of school closings and the essential services we provide to youth, teens, and families, all Y Academy early learning and out-of-school time programs will operate on normal schedules. We encourage families to keep their children at home but realize that is not an option for some families. We will keep you informed if there are any schedule changes.

Child Watch.
Each branch is currently determining the availability of Child Watch for staff and members at their facility. Please check with your local branch before you arrive to inquire if Child Watch will be open.

Fitness Centers, Gymnasiums and Pools Schedules.
Our facilities will operate with new branch closing hours and with limited capacity in the fitness center, gymnasiums, group classes, and pools.

  • Fitness Center: The Y is instituting a “social interaction zone” which means only select pieces of fitness equipment can be utilized to ensure a proper safe zone. Personal training classes will run on scheduled times. Some branches will close early.
  • Gymnasiums: With the exception of the Gymnastics Center in Saugus, Gymnasiums will be open but operating with capacity limits. Occupancy in the Gym will be monitored closely and some members may be asked to wait to enter the Gym.
  • Pools: Pools will continue to be open for Adult Lap Swim, Private Lessons, and Water Exercise Programs only until further notice.
  • Group Exercise Classes: Group classes will continue to have limited capacity. We encourage all member to “Reserve a Spot” by registering for your group activity 48 hours in advance. You can register by creating an account when you register for your favorite class. Please check the group class schedule regularly for any changes. Some classes may move outdoors.

Updated Branch Hours

Lynn Branch Hours

Mon-Fri: 5:00am-9:00pm
Sat and Sun: 7:00am-5:00pm

Melrose Branch Hours

Mon-Fri: 5:00am-7:00pm
Sat and Sun: 6:30am-4:00pm

Peabody Branch Hours

Mon-Fri: 5:00am-9:00pm
Sat and Sun: 6:00am-5:00pm

Saugus Branch Hours

Mon-Fri: 5:30am-7:00pm
Sat: 7:30am–6:00pm
Sun: 8:00am–5:00pm

 

In addition, these additional steps have been taken to limit the amount of people in our branches and help keep everyone healthy.

  • Branch access is limited: No guest passes will be sold and the YMCA nationwide reciprocity program is suspended.
  • Limited group exercise attendance: Group fitness classes are limited to 20/class. Group cycle classes are limited to 10/class.
  • No props in classes: Weights, mats, chairs, and blocks will be removed from fitness studios. Instructors will have modifications available during class.
  • Medically-based programs like LiveSTRONG at the Y, Enhance for Seniors, and Chair Yoga classes are cancelled. Virtual and off-site classes are being considered.
  • No new pool or party rentals in branches until further notice.
  • The Y is instituting a “social interaction zone” which means only select pieces of fitness equipment can be utilized to ensure a proper safe zone.
  • Youth Basketball Association will be cancelled until Saturday, April 4.
  • Intense and on-going cleaning will continue.

We know the Y is an important part of your daily health and family routines and we appreciate your understanding and patience at this time.

Sincerely,

Kathleen Walsh, President and CEO

 

March 12, 2020

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Adjusted Branch Operations Schedule

As COVID-19 continues to spread, the CDC and our local boards of health advise businesses and institutions that taking steps to slow the spread of the coronavirus now will contribute to the public health response to the outbreak. While the risk remains low, we are joining many organizations in the area that are stepping up their responses.

SCHEDULE ADJUSTMENTS:

The YMCA of Metro North has adjusted its operations to increase social distancing by reducing the number of people with access to our branches and limiting group convening. The following adjusted operational plan will be in place for at least two-four weeks.

Effective Immediately: Friday, March 13, 2020:

  • Branch access is limited: No guest passes will be sold and the YMCA national reciprocity program is suspended.
  • Limited group exercise attendance: Group fitness classes are limited to 20/class. Group cycle classes are limited to 10/class.
  • No props in classes: Weights, mats, chairs, and blocks will be removed from fitness studios. Instructors will have modifications available during class.
  • Medically-based programs like LiveSTRONG at the Y, Enhance for Seniors, and Chair Yoga classes are cancelled. Virtual and off-site classes are being considered.
  • No new pool or party rentals in branches until further notice.
  • The Y is instituting a “social interaction zone” which means only select pieces of fitness equipment can be utilized to ensure a proper six-foot safe zone.
  • Youth Basketball Programs will be cancelled until Saturday, April 4.
  • Intense and on-going cleaning will continue.

Effective This Weekend ONLY: Saturday, March 14 and Sunday, March 15: all branches will be partially closed for intense cleaning.

  • Branches will open for members to use Fitness Centers and Pools are open for Adult Lap Swim only.
  • Gymnastics Center in Saugus is CLOSED.
  • All Group Exercise Classes are CANCELLED this weekend.
  • All Gymnasiums will be CLOSED.
  • All Programs: Group exercise, swimming, and youth sports including youth basketball cancelled, make ups will happen over April vacation.
  • Child Watch will be CLOSED.

On Monday, March 16 the association will continue to operate on an adjusted operational plan. Program schedules may resume subject to new information from the Department of Public Health. All Y Academy early learning and out-of-school time programs will be open.  All schedules can be accessed from the website.

We feel it is our responsibility to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus to our members and our communities. We also recognize this is an interruption in your normal health routine and apologize for the temporary inconvenience.

Anyone seeking additional information about the YMCA of Metro North can contact their local branch.

 

 

March 11, 2020

Dear YMCA Members:

The YMCA of Metro North is committed to providing a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone who enters our doors. Information is coming out daily about the coronavirus, and in an effort to keep the YMCA community healthy and prevent the spread of germs, we will continue to share important information on our efforts to maintain a healthy environment in our facilities.

Health officials continue to advise us on the importance of being vigilant in our efforts to prevent the spread of illness. Each of our YMCA locations and child care facilities are thoroughly cleaned throughout the day and after closing. Special care is being taken by Y staff to exceed quality standards in place year-round that keep our facility clean and safe. Staff are focusing extra attention on sanitizing high traffic areas and commonly used surfaces including counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, light switches, keyboards, tablets, and toys.

Several members have inquired about pools and saunas. The CDC recently stated that there is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs. Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection (e.g., with chlorine and bromine) of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19. Read their statement about water transmission and COVID-19. Pools in our facilities are monitored several times a day to check and adjust chlorine levels.

Hand washing remains the most effective method of preventing the spread of germs, including flu and coronavirus. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.

Everyday actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases like coronavirus, include:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick until you’ve been free of fever for 24 hours.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wipe down fitness machines and weights before and after use.
  • Bring your own towels and Yoga mats.

We are also encouraging everyone to do their part in helping prevent the spread of germs and viruses by staying away when you or your family members are sick or when you have traveled abroad. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever, cough and shortness of breath, please stay home, rest, and contact your medical provider.

Yesterday, Gov. Baker declared a state of emergency and officials are taking steps to ensure there are enough resources available to health care providers in the event of a more serious outbreak in Massachusetts. We are monitoring the situation with our local boards of health and school district representatives to prepare for the possibility that our programs could be temporarily impacted if the situation significantly worsens. We will keep all families and members updated with information as it develops.

Additionally, we encourage you to regularly check the CDC’s website and Mass.gov for important updates and safety information.

In the meantime, if you have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.

Sincerely,

Kathleen Walsh
President and CEO
978-548-4443
kwalsh@metronorthymca.org

 

March 2, 2020

 

At the YMCA of Metro North, we take your health and safety very seriously. On a regular basis, the management meets to discuss efforts to improve this and ensure that your YMCA experience is a positive one.

Most recently, the coronavirus has headlined the news as it continues to spread across the world. It has baffled scientists and resulted in quarantine and chaos in the hardest hit nations. In the United States, coronavirus has sporadically been diagnosed in people demonstrating respiratory distress. In Massachusetts, it was reported yesterday that there are more than 40 presumptive and confirmed cases. The CDC believes, however, we will have a much larger outbreak at some point.

We are taking steps to best ensure your health and safety, including working with our professional cleaning service and our own Y employees to pay close attention to sanitizing our public spaces, including bathrooms, locker rooms, fitness rooms and equipment, and child care areas. We are increasing the supplies at our hand sanitizer in stations throughout our facilities.

As with seasonal flu and strep infections, there are general precautions we can take to remain as healthy as possible, but we need your help:

  • Wipe down fitness machines and weights. This is a standard request to members during any season, but it is particularly important this time of year. We are also removing shared Yoga mats from our facilities. Members can choose to bring their own mats or purchase a mat from your Y’s Welcome Center.
  • Practice good hand hygiene. Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available.
  • When coughing and sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue. You can also cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
  • Avoid sharing drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, dishes, towels, and other items.
  • Whenever possible, avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you, your children, or your family members are sick, please stay at home.
  • Practice other good health habits. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, at work, at your YMCA, or at school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
The novel coronavirus is an evolving situation that we are monitoring closely, including following national guidelines and recommendations provided to us through our parent organization, the Y-USA and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.Please refer to the following site for more information.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.mass.gov/guides/information-on-the-outbreak-of-2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19

Thank you in advance for your cooperation!

Kathleen Walsh
President and CEO
978-548-4443
kwalsh@metronorthymca.org