YMCA leaders won't let fire be a setback - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

YMCA leaders won't let fire be a setback

YMCA leaders in Ocean Springs are not letting a fire stop them from moving forward. Image source: WLOX News. YMCA leaders in Ocean Springs are not letting a fire stop them from moving forward. Image source: WLOX News.
The Blossman YMCA senior center burned down last Wednesday. Image source: WLOX News. The Blossman YMCA senior center burned down last Wednesday. Image source: WLOX News.
All their spare tables, chairs, records, everything is gone. Image source: WLOX News. All their spare tables, chairs, records, everything is gone. Image source: WLOX News.
The center was supposed to be renovated as a part of the YMCA's $2.5 million expansion project, but now it will most likely be leveled. Image source: WLOX News. The center was supposed to be renovated as a part of the YMCA's $2.5 million expansion project, but now it will most likely be leveled. Image source: WLOX News.
OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

YMCA leaders in Ocean Springs are not letting a fire stop them from moving forward. The Blossman YMCA senior center burned down last Wednesday. It was a highly utilized building on the campus, especially during this time of expansion.

"Our senior adults have had our classes in here, played bridge and had Bible study. We're doing our best to find alternate locations within the facility, and of course we've had a lot of offers," said YMCA Wellness Director Joey Conwill,

YMCA leaders are thankful for the community's support since the fire. Conwill says YMCA members have been just as supportive during this tough time.

"Our members have just been great. They're wonderful. They understand that we're a charity. Their membership here means more than just a gym and swim, they're actually giving back to the community," said Conwill.

Senior citizens met in the building for fitness classes and CPR classes were held there. It was also used as a storage facility and office space.

"One of the big things is our CPR mannequins were in the building. I haven't gotten a final count on that, but somewhere around 10 or 12 of those mannequins," said YMCA Chief Financial Officer Eric Baacke.

Baacke says they have taken an inventory of what was in the building. All their spare tables, chairs, records, everything is gone.

"The building has no roof. The more it rains, the less we're going to be able to salvage anything that's left on the inside. We've kind of been bothering them as much as we can trying to get things moving along and get things back to normal as quickly as we can," said Baacke.

The center was supposed to be renovated as a part of the YMCA's $2.5 million expansion project, but now it will most likely be leveled.

On Friday, Baacke and the YMCA's Chief Executive Officer will meet with the architect working on the expansion project to hammer out a plan on how they will move forward with the building.

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