YMCA presents update to City Commissioners

Ponca City Now - May 6, 2015 12:09 pm

The Ponca City Board of Commissioners heard a semi-annual report from the YMCA Monday afternoon during its work session.

Shane Harland, the Y’s executive director, and Stephanie Williams, senior director of programs and marketing, presented the report.

Harland said the Y currently has 9,030 members in 3,880 family units, which represents a retention rate of 71 percent over the previous year. The center is down about 150 members over a year ago. To date in 2015, 1,875 members are helped with financial assistance.

The report included a chart showing membership by ZIP code, with 13 percent of the Y’s members living outside Ponca City.

Harland talked about the Y’s capital reserve. He said Boettcher Law Firm and Ponca City Junior Baseball put about $20,000 into the reserve for new irrigation and a pitcher’s mound.

He said new turfas, a field conditioner, is being put on the junior baseball fields and all adult softball fields.

The YMCA’s Board of Directors recently approved spending $8,000 for turfas on a T-ball field and $14,000 on youth baseball fields.

Williams said the YMCA hosted t hree after-prom parties this year and has already booked Ponca City High School and Newkirk for next year.

They Y is partnering with Red Cross for blood drives, including one scheduled for May 8.

The facility also has been rented to several schools for AR goal celebrations. Oilton Schools held a celebration on Tuesday. Williams said 1,250 students are expected to attend events by the end of May.

This year the YMCA added a school to the Make A Splash program. Now Lincoln, Roosevelt and Liberty schools have 170 second-graders who know how to swim because of the program, Williams said.

The Healthy Kids Day program held April 25 saw 450 families participate, Williams said. The Lions Club brought their vision screening building and Pioneer Technology Center brought out various health screenings.

The event was sponsored by the Community Health Foundation. Woodlands School won play equipment for the school for having the most participants.

Williams said partner project Operation Pioneer Spirit will end after next year. She said founder Mary Anne Potter is hoping all military personnel will be home after next year.

The Y also has a project for f oster children at Christmas called Fostering Hope, Williams said.

She talked about the youth sports programs available for Pre-K to age 3 and ages 4-7, as well as the Sail Fish swim club and the Po-Hi swim teams which use the faciltiy.

Adult co-ed leagues began play April 27.

The Y will be the location for two World Softball League tournaments on July 25 and Aug. 15, and a 3v3 Live! Soccer tour tournament will be held on the adult softball outfields onMay 30 and Oct. 31.

Williams said Ponca City Jr. Baseball is finishing up its fourth season of youth games, with all four fields being used Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 5:30 to 10 p.m.

She said the Y has had 8 adult league volleyball teams and has partnered with the Po-Hi team for practice, with 100 volleyball girls attending.

In addition to physical activity, the Y has been encouraging healthy eating as a part of fitness, Williams said. A Youth Garden is growing down by the shed, with 70 varieties of fruits, veggies, herbs and flowers.

She said the youth tried their radishes last week. The Y is working on after-school and summer Healthy Eating and Physical Activities standards, she said.

Williams said the Y had a great response to the Indoor Tri on March 28. On Oct. 24 this year, there will be a " Y Not Tri," a non-competitive event for participants to see how they can do in three areas — swimming, biking and running.

YMCA Board President Link Cotham talked about the Y’s second year of its sustaining campaign.

"Last year goal was $38,000 and we came close," Cotham said. "This year’s goal is $43,000 and we’re within striking distance. This campaign offsets some of our costs to pay scholarships for families and youth who otherwise could not afford to go to Y. It also pays for Youth Camp and other activities."

Cotham added that the Y is still a very positive, strong point here in Ponca City.

"It might be the first thing you see coming in on the south side. We have given a lot of tours for corporations considering bringing people to Ponca City.

He said money raised in the sustaining campaign goes 100 percent to the scholarships for children.

"Dollars are tight," he said. "There are no administrative costs and no fees."


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