Muscatine Y begins construction process

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The Muscatine community has benefited from the Muscatine Community Y for decades. On Wednesday April 12, 2017, the Y broke ground on a new $7 million renovation. The current facility opened in March of 1991 just off of Logan and Cedar street. The facility has been one of the most used Ys in the state.
“We are blessed because we have an awesome Y. To be quite honest, we are bursting at the seams,” said Bret Olson, Director of the Muscatine Community Y. “It’s time to add some more space. We have 9,700 members, we have space issues, and we are going to solve with this renovation.” The new design will include a new flat indoor track, a renovated and expanded weight room facility, and a new gymnasium for more opportunities for basketball.
The Y also houses Big Brothers Big Sisters of Muscatine as well as the Special Olympics. “There isn’t another Y in the state that has both, and only a handful in the country that have both, and those are vital programs that take up space. This new facility will provide more space for those organizations as well,” said Olson. “Housing those programs is very important. If those organizations didn’t have that space, they wouldn’t be able to do a lot of the programs that they are able to provide because we can house them.”
The facility also has a variety of youth clubs designed for multiple interests. “We have a game club and other various clubs because it is important for us to have the kids there after school instead of sitting at home in an empty unsupervised house, which can end up being trouble for some kids,” said Olson.
Jim Sturms, the long-time director of the Muscatine Y, was a part of the ground-breaking ceremony and was a huge part of the growth of the Y in Muscatine. “It’s always exciting to see success. If we weren’t successful, we wouldn’t be here celebrating the expansion if we didn’t need it. People are coming here and using it,” said Sturms. “I always had a place to go. I spent a lot of time at the Y and consequently I was able to start coming here as a job, and I still haven’t left,” Sturms said with a smile.