We are working hard to help make a community recreation center a reality for Watauga County. Please help us by taking a minute to write the commissioners an email in support of this effort.
Watauga County Commissioners
Background: In 2012, High Country Recreation reached out to the Catawba Valley YMCA to explore the possibility of a YMCA in Watauga County. After several community meetings, including with the county Board of Commissioners, the Board of the Catawba Valley YMCA paid to have an formal economic study for Watauga County to move forward with a YMCA, but our county did not pass this test. The YMCA requires a certain number of possible memberships to move forward and Watauga County did not have enough. This took into account the population but also other factors including income.
A few things High Country Recreation learned in the process:
A YMCA would need to be funded completely by donations raised locally.
The national and regional YMCA networks do not fund local branches. Instead, a local YMCA would need to locally fundraise almost all of the money before any facility can be built.
There are no more independent YMCAs – each local YMCA much be part of a regional network set out by the national YMCA office.
Watauga County would have been part of the Catawba Valley YMCA and not its own, independent branch.
A Watauga YMCA (including the facility) would have been controlled by the Catawba Valley YMCA Board of Directors.
There were legitimate community concerns about raising millions of dollars to build a YMCA facility that would be owned and controlled by a Board of Directors not controlled by local citizens.
There is a NEED for a recreation center even though the YMCA funding model would not work.
This has been identified as a need for decades in our community, and the process of talking with the YMCA confirmed this.
To add to the increasing support and excitement for a proposed community recreation center for Watauga County, a third public input meeting scheduled. This meeting will work towards developing and increasing the community’s understanding in establishing a recreation center that will provide the county with countless benefits. Be sure to attend to be a part of this important cause!
Join the Facebook event for updates and reminders!
Also, make sure to download and send a letter to the Watauga County Commissioners expressing your desire to make this a reality:
Watauga County Commissioners
Continuing the trend set at the first public interest meeting regarding the proposed community recreation center in Watauga County, the second meeting held at Cove Creek Elementary experienced the same great energy and excitement. With over 30 community members in attendance, the collective voice and desire for a recreation center gained even more momentum.
To do your part in keeping the energy alive, follow the link below to a downloadable letter to send to the following county commisioners. Also, be sure to attend a third meeting on June 9th at 5:30pm in the Parkway School cafeteria. Together, as a community who strongly values the importance of recreation and active lifestyles, we can make this dream a reality!
Watauga County Commissioners: