Just in case a healthy body is not reward enough, the Channel Islands YMCA (CIYMCA) is offering other incentives to encourage local residents to join the organization. The CIYMCA, which is composed of six separate branches, is hosting its second consecutive free weeklong open house, January 4 through January 10, in an effort to attract potential new members in the wake of New Year’s resolutions.

The open house is encompassing all of the branches, with individual events at each of its locations: Camarillo, Lompoc, Montecito, Santa Barbara, Santa Ynez, and Ventura. It was instituted as a means of providing low-income families with a glimpse of all of the fitness and health opportunities the YMCA has to offer. Hoping to replicate last year’s success, with its approximately 1,000 attendees, all six branches will utilize the week as they see fit pun intended offering various lures.

The Camarillo location will feature guest speakers geared to motivate attendees to pursue healthier lifestyles. At the Lompoc branch, a celebratory barbecue will be held on Saturday, January 9 with subsequent exercise demonstrations to undo the barbecue. Montecito’s branch will be providing six complimentary personal-training sessions to those who join during open house week. Multiple exercise how-to demonstrations will be held at the Santa Barbara branch. In Ventura, both arts and exercise are on the menu, with live music, painting, and collage-making dispersed throughout the week. The Santa Ynez location, along with all of the other five branches, is also offering gift bags to those who attend. All of the branches’ schedules of open house activities can be found at ciymca.org.

The CIYMCA has a very strong track record of providing financial assistance for those who may otherwise not be able to join. With 44,000 members and growing, the CIYMCA gives approximately $1.2 million dollars worth of financial aid, granting all members the chance to participate in its wide array of services, including among other things child care, team sports, and after-school programs. According to the CIYMCA communications and marketing director, Susan Sawyer, the CIYMCA aims not only to tone muscles but to “enrich the spirit, mind, and body.”


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