Lake Crystal Rec Center planning expansion

As the Lake Crystal Area Recreation Center enters its 23rd year, the community is looking forward to an expansion of the facilities.

The expansion would include the addition of a farm-themed indoor children’s playground with a fitness area for adult caregivers.  The indoor playground will fill a real need in the area, according to Rec Center Executive Director Ryan Yunkers.

He described the planned fitness area of the playground as a “cool, unique feature” that would include a treadmill, elliptical, exercise bike, and possibly even free weights.  It would give parents and adults time for their own physical activity while their children burn off energy.

The expansion would also include a party or community room that can be rented by guests.

Completed in 2000, the city-owned community wellness center already boasts a six-lane lap swim pool with a zero-depth toddler area & slide, a fully functional cardio & fitness room, an aerobics studio, a walking track, and gymnasiums.  The rec center also has a partnership with Madelia Health for on-site physical therapy.

Yunkers said he has just the right team of managers and program directors to bring the expansion to life after years of discussions. “Twenty-two years later, we’re in a good position to take the next step,” he said.

Fundraising for the expansion is in the beginning stages. Yunkers and his team are looking for major sponsors, donors, granters, and project partners. Meetings have been scheduled with state lawmakers to discuss potential funding. Yunkers there is also an opportunity for naming rights.

Several community members have already stepped up with generous donations.   Construction is likely to begin in Spring 2024, but it could come as early as this fall if fundraising exceeds expectations.

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