Twin Pike Family YMCA completes challenge grant

Posted: Jul. 15, 2013 10:42 am Updated: Aug. 5, 2013 11:15 am

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

LOUISIANA, Mo. -- The Twin Pike Family YMCA celebrated a successful capital fundraising campaign Monday with a groundbreaking ceremony for a new indoor aquatic center and walking track.

The YMCA announced Monday it raised $1.3 million toward the $3.85 million estimated construction cost for the facility. The Mabee Foundation promised $500,000 toward the cost if the community could raise $1.25 million by July 10, which the organization surpassed.

"It's been unbelievable how this has come together," said Marsha Garrison, executive director for the Twin Pike YMCA. "It's been very overwhelming. It's a great compliment."

Garrison said the final donations came in various sizes and forms. She said a small girl on the YMCA's swim team chipped in her $20 allowance, parents gave $1,000 in their son's memory, local companies called in donations from the corporate level and one senior citizen with no money to spare gave $5 anyway.

"The people and organizations have come together because they do want the opportunity for healthy lifestyles," Garrison said.

She said donations came in so quickly toward the end, the YMCA was unsure which company or individual pushed the YMCA over the $1.25 million hurdle.

The Mabee Foundation accepted both in-kind donations and pledges toward the final goal. Donors have until 2018 to pay their contributions. About $70,000 raised has been in in-kind donations. These services included printing costs, broadcast time and equipment use.

Garrison was unsure how long it would take to complete the aquatic center and walking track. She said plans for the facility are still in the final stages.

Once complete, Garrison looks forward to offering the community a year-round swimming facility.

"We focus on the Twin in our name, we do serve communities on both sides of the river," she said. "It will give people the opportunity to stay active year-round. It's just opening new doors."