Claudius Crozet Park officials and Atlantic Coast Athletic Club leaders have worked out a transition plan for current members of the Crozet Park Aquatics and Fitness Center that will cover the period between March 1 and April 15, when the Piedmont Family YMCA ends its operation and ACAC takes it up. The Y’s lease ends April 1, but it informed the park that it will end operations on March 1. ACAC’s three-year lease goes into effect April 1. To set up its operations, ACAC will close the fitness center and pool April 1 and re-open on April 16.
“We are working madly to make sure the transition goes smoothly,” said Susan Johnson, ACAC vice president for marketing and communications. “We’re really excited. We’re meeting every day about it. We want to establish trust immediately.”
The park’s after-school program and the access of competitive swim teams to the pool will not be disturbed during the transition, said Kim Guenther, chair of the community-owned park’s volunteer board.
“The park board, ACAC, and the YMCA will work together over the next two months to make the upcoming transition as smooth as possible,” she said. “Undoubtedly, given all the moving parts involved in this change, there will certainly be hiccups along the way. It’s unavoidable given the complexities involved. I hope the community and especially current members who choose to join the Crozet Park Aquatic and Fitness Center (CPAFC) can be patient.”
The YMCA took up operation of the park’s pool and fitness facility in 2012. “This has been a significant partnership with benefits flowing both ways,” Guenther said. “The YMCA helped establish an all-season membership following installation of the pool dome in 2012 and, in turn, operation of the park’s pool and fitness facility helped the YMCA hone their operational skills ahead of developing the Brooks Family YMCA at McIntire Park in Charlottesville. We are proud to have partnered with the YMCA and wish them continued success.
“In partnership with ACAC, we expect to significantly expand CPAFC membership and programs,” she added. “We are especially focused on summer camp and after-school activities that make full use the park’s 22 acres. We want the park ‘rock’n’ by the time we break ground on a new aquatic and fitness facility in the next few years.”
To ease the impact of the unexpected early closure of the facility, the park and ACAC are offering these options from March 1 – April 15:
Members who join CPAFC may use any of ACAC’s four local facilities: Old Trail in Crozet, Downtown Charlottesville, Albemarle Square and Pantops for the duration of the closure. Club locations, hours and amenities, including childcare, aquatics center hours, and over 400 weekly group exercise classes, can be found online at acac.com/charlottesville
Membership prices will remain the same, and enrollment fees will be waived for any current Crozet YMCA members.
“There are no plans to increase the rates at the Crozet Park Aquatics & Fitness Center,” Johnson said. “Any future changes in membership pricing will be a joint decision between ACAC and the Claudius Crozet Park Board. We are committed to working together to keep membership prices affordable for our Crozet community, including continuing the scholarship programs previously offered. Our shared vision is that the CPAFC will remain an affordable and family-friendly destination for all members of the Crozet community, regardless of ability to pay.”
Meanwhile, ACAC is hosting Q&A open houses (with refreshments, raffles and giveaways) during February at the park’s renovated community room located directly behind the fitness center (the former radio station building). Sessions are being held Mondays from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesdays from 8:30 a.m. to noon, and on Saturdays from 8:30 a.m. to noon. Information on membership, employment and youth programming, including ACAC’s after-school program and summer camp programs, will be available.
“ACAC is committed to maintaining the current programming of the facility while we listen and learn how best to serve families and the fitness needs of our current members and the Crozet community at large,” Johnson said. Specifically, she added:
“Membership rates will remain exactly as they were previously under YMCA operations. Current Crozet YMCA members who join the CPAFC will not pay an enrollment fee. There is no fee increase for the ACAC after-school program. There are no changes planned for schedules related to programming, services, stay and play services, etc.
“Current ACAC members will have the option to join the Crozet Park Aquatics and Fitness Center on a month-to-month basis. Current ACAC members who wish to add this service to their membership will not pay the enrollment fee.
“Financial assistance will be provided to anyone who qualifies. No one will be turned away because of their inability to pay. Membership scholarships will be awarded using the same criteria as were previously in place.
“CPAFC will offer a summer-only pool membership.
“Members of the Crozet Gators Swim Team (CGST) will be required to join the CPAFC for the duration of the swim season, as they have in years past. Members of the CGST who are also members of CPAFC will not be charged additional fees to maintain their CPAFC membership.”
Information on rates, schedules and programming can be found online at: acac.com/crozetpark and crozetpark.org
The park board does not have access to the Crozet YMCA member list and is unable to communicate directly with current members, Guenther said. Announcements about the Crozet Park Aquatic and Fitness Center will be made via social media, the ACAC and park websites, and in the Crozet Gazette.