YMCA of the Chippewa Valley begins phased reopening

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Businesses in the area, large and small, are starting the slow process of re-opening their doors.

This week, local YMCA locations are starting to open the doors for members once again. But according to CEO Theresa Hillis, it's been an uneasy time for the YMCA of the Chippewa Valley.

“We spent 2 months planning our reopening and waiting,” she says.

Now, that wait is being eased, with "Phase 1" of re-opening. The John & Fay Menard Tennis Center in Eau Claire opened its doors back up Monday. The Chippewa Falls YMCA location did so Tuesday and its facility in downtown Eau Claire opens Wednesday.

“Staying active is really important to everyone, but more important now with the pandemic,” Hillis says.

When members come back, they'll notice the changes, which includes drinking fountains that have been turned into hand-washing stations, members and staff disinfecting equipment before and after use and controlled entrances and exits in place at all sites.

Pools at the Eau Claire and Chippewa Falls locations will re-open starting June 1st for lap swimming only.

“We've had a lot of thought about what we can do safely, especially looking at distancing of six feet, wearing masks and all the protocols with cleaning,” Hillis says.

The YMCA of the Chippewa Valley hasn't said when the next phase of re-opening would happen, but Hillis says it's being done with safety and care in mind.

“We are all in the unknown. It is not just us, it is everyone so how do we react, how do we plan and everything is constantly changing,” she says.

For more information about the phased re-opening of the YCMA locations in Eau Claire and Chippewa Falls, click here.