The YMCA lives on past Sandy

Kelsey Shockey, Web Sports Editor

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When thinking about the fall, people usually think about how the leaves change, how bad their allergies are, and everyone’s favorite holiday, Halloween.

However, now the great majority of the northeast can associate this season with Hurricane Sandy, which devastated many citizens on Oct. 25th of last year .

It caused a great spook for specifically the Westport YMCA.

“Looking back on Superstorm Sandy from a year’s distance, what stands out is how the Y staff, our 5,000 members and the entire community pulled together. Not only to help the Family Y during its month long shutdown, but to lend support to neighbors near and far in their own recovery efforts,” Scott Smith, director of communications at the Y, said.

Since the storm caused a lot of damage around town, the YMCA was unsure of whether or not they were going to reopen.

The storm especially affected the mechanical systems and equipment because of all of the water.

“Nobody knows this old building’s inner workings like Pat Costanzo, the Y’s longtime facilities director, and his expertise during our crisis made all the difference in helping us get back to serving our members and community,” Smith said.

Despite facing hard challenges, the YMCA pulled through and overcame adversity. Not only that, but they also gained their confidence back.

One major thing the YMCA accomplished was  renovating their Child Care Center, which is located in the Bedford Building.

“The cost was prohibitive, given the fact that we’re now just months away from moving to our modern new Y facility,” Smith said.

A new  YMCA building is being built.  Construction started last February and will be finished this  summer.

“As much as we love the building that we’ve called home since 1923, if there’s one thing Sandy proved it’s that the time has come for the Westport Weston Family Y to be located in a modern, fully accessible building — a home that’s not one more bad storm away from closing for good,” Smith said.

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