MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

June 9, 2011

Swim & Fitness Center increases fees

Membership, joining, swim costs go up July 1

Members of the Muskogee Swim & Fitness Center will see an increase in their membership fees, and non-members will pay more for swimming after July 1.

The Swim & Fitness Center is trying to operate independently, said Parks and Recreation Director Mark Wilkerson, and a small increase in fees will help.

“Unlike the other Parks and Recreation services and facilities, this program is not part of the general fund, so we have to generate enough income to pay all of our expenses or any capital needs for equipment, improvements, or to do something new,” Wilkerson said.

The fee increase is 50 cents per member, per month. In addition, open swim fees will go from $2 to $3 per person, per session.

Wilkerson said the fitness center hopes to be able to put some funds back to replace equipment as it ages and make improvements.

“We are actually budgeting with this increase to do some improvements to the building that members have desired, such as locker room improvements,” Wilkerson said. “So, members can see some returns on these fee increases.”

The Muskogee Swim & Fitness Center has about 2,000 members as well as individuals who use the open swim or use a daily pass.

In addition to the regular fee changes, the joining fee is increasing too.

Those who wish to join pay a one-time joining fee of $20 for the first person and $5 for each person in the family thereafter.

After July 1, the fee for an additional person to join will be $10, Wilkerson said.

Currently, visitors who don’t wish to become monthly members can pay a day-use fee, but the center is implementing a “punch pass” for long-term visitor use.

“We’ve had a lot of people asking for those,” said Connie Yott, an employee at the center.

People who only need to use the fitness center for a short time, such as through the summer, can buy punch passes and avoid paying a joining fee, Wilkerson said.

“They’ll sell a 10-visit punch card that’s discounted off of the daily fee,” Wilkerson said. “It’s a proposal from our manager that other facilities do, so we’re going to give it a try.”

Non-members can swim during open swim from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays, 6:45 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays through July 27, and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays.

The center increased those fees $1 per person, hoping to keep it low enough so everyone can use the pool but also help with the cost of maintaining the pool as well, Wilkerson said.

“The pool is the single most expensive part of the whole building,” Wilkerson said. “So, it only makes sense that we needed to raise our fees to the swim area a little bit.”

Zumba dance instructor Rosie Flournoy teaches at the center, and her son is a member as well.

Flournoy has worked at other fitness centers, and the Muskogee Swim & Fitness Center membership fees are reasonable, she said.

At the Muskogee Swim & Fitness Center, a regular, individual monthly cost will be $37.25 — and that is all-inclusive for the fitness room, land and aquatic group exercise classes, lap swim and locker facilities.

Each additional family member added will be $18.50 per month, and there are no contracts.

Reach Wendy Burton at (918) 684-2926 or wburton@muskogeephoenix.com.

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