Some YMCA facilities, summer camps to open next week, but with limits
Community centers and programs operated by the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago will begin gradually reopening to the public Monday, the organization announced -- but swimming pools, saunas and hot tubs will remain closed.
A phased approach is planned to ensure new safety procedures are followed. The facilities have been closed since mid-March because of the COVID-19 crisis.
In the first phase, summer camps will open at nine suburban sites starting next week. Camps in Chicago will open June 22 and July 6.
YMCA fitness centers will open starting July 1, but not all at once. Fitness activities should be running at all facilities by Aug. 1.
The YMCA operates facilities in towns including Crystal Lake, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Lake Zurich, Lindenhurst, Naperville and Palatine. Last month, the organization announced plans to permanently shutter facilities in Des Plaines, Naperville and Niles.
Some suburban Y's, including ones in Schaumburg and Elgin, operate separately from the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago.
Fitness members at the Metropolitan Chicago Y's will be required to reserve time to prevent crowding in the gym. Reservations also will be required for indoor and outdoor group fitness programs and personal training sessions.
Health screenings will be required at check-in, and social distancing policies will be enforced. New cleaning protocols that follow standards set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will be followed, too.
Changing rooms and towel service will not be available. Only water fountains designed to fill bottles will be available. Seating in the common area has been removed, and social distancing must be practiced.
Members are encouraged to bring their own mats, resistance bands and other personal fitness equipment.
"These precautions are in place to keep us all safe," Richard Malone, the YMCA's president and CEO, said in a news release. "Anyone who declines to comply with our new policies and procedures is putting others at risk and will be asked to leave the facility."
Full facility operations, including pool access, will reopen when public health guidelines permit, the organization said.
For more information on the new requirements, visit ymcachicago.org/reopening.