March 17, 2020
The Orthman Community YMCA in Lexington, the Don Sjogren Community YMCA in Holdrege and YMCA at Gothenburg Health are closed until March 31 due to concerns about COVID-19.
YMCA of the Prairie CEO Riley Gruntorad said no cases of the virus have been identified at the three YMCAs. However, YMCA leaders have united with schools and other community organizations to be socially responsible and follow current national recommendations to limit gatherings to 10 people or less to slow the potential spread of the novel coronavirus.
“We are taking steps now as a precautionary measure to keep our employees, members and program participants safe,” Gruntorad said. “We serve members from tiny infants to those in their 90s, and we want to do everything we can to ensure they don’t contact this very-contagious virus. This decision was made with input from branch board members from each community, and it was not an easy one. But, we feel it’s the responsible thing to do right now.”
Gruntorad said that the YMCA will be exploring other ways to continue to serve the community during this time. It is part of the YMCAs mission to help strengthen the community, and that work doesn’t always occur in a building. The Y will find other ways to be the “hub” of the community while working within the “social distancing” guidelines.
“We ask our members to continue to support us during this time,” Gruntorad said. “This is a constantly changing situation, and we are learning each day about new ways that we can be safe and support our staff, members and the community at the same time.”
All YMCA programs and activities scheduled through March 31 are canceled or postponed. The St. Patrick’s Day Bike and Run scheduled in Lexington on March 21 has been canceled.
Members and program participants are encouraged to follow YMCA Facebook pages or the website (www.ymcaoftheprairie.org) to stay up to date on rescheduled YMCA programs and facility reopening dates. While the plan right now is to reopen all branches on April 1, it will ultimately depend on the local and national recommendations.
The YMCA is the leading nonprofit committed to strengthening the community by connecting all people to their potential, purpose and each other. The YMCA of the Prairie serves more than 9,000 members from its facilities in Lexington, Holdrege and Gothenburg.
For more information, or if you have further questions, please call your local branch office, where staff will be available for limited hours during the closing.
Don Sjogren Community YMCA in Holdrege: (308) 995-4040
Orthman Community YMCA in Lexington: (308) 324-1970
YMCA at Gothenburg Health: (308) 537-4022