New fitness center in downtown Blaine
For six months, Mary MacDonald led organized exercising sessions outside at Marine Park. But now, she leads fitness activities in a two-story building on Martin Street in downtown Blaine.
The Harbourside Fitness Center, which features much more than the usual gym, opened to the public last month � a year after MacDonald began her search for a fitness center location.
�I�ve been looking for a place for a while. We first started working out at the school, but then with construction we had to leave. Then we went to Marine Park for six months, and it never rained,� MacDonald said. �This center is so different. People are just so grateful, so thankful to have something here. This is what communities want.�
The reason she decided to open a fitness center, MacDonald said, is to fill a need that hasn�t been filled yet. �A gym is a real social spot, and there are no real social opportunities here in Blaine,� she said. �What has kept me going is the people to teach classes to.�
The gym features a variety of equipment, much of it custom-made in Langley, B.C., MacDonald said. �We�ve got a lot of cardio equipment and weight training, bikes, treadmills. Even a punching bag.�
Throughout the week, there are numerous courses offered, including core strength, yoga, pilates, yogalates, intuitive movement and sculpting. �Classes are a great way to learn what to do in the gym,� she said, noting techniques and other things are learned. �We also have courses offered for just women.�
Local professionals, MacDonald said, have been coming forward, willing to offer their skills, and to help with the courses, including Pat Armejo who will lead the adult and children karate classes.
Massage, tanning and childcare are also available. �The childcare program is really something I�d like to grow,� she said. �It�s not just for those using the facilities here.�
The childcare sessions are currently two hours each, and club members pay $3 per session or $5 per session with two kids. For non-members, the cost is $4 per session or $6.50 for two children.
Daycare hours include 9:30 to 11:30 a.m on Tuesday, 10 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, and 4:45 to 6:45 p.m on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
The center, the first in the area to offer such a variety of fitness and health needs, is open seven days a week.�We�re open Monday through Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Then Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. So there�s no excuse not to exercise,� MacDonald said. �And what you pay for a month is dinner for two,� she said.
Currently the regular membership is $35 per month. A yearly contract, through monthly payments, is also available. For more information, or to become a member, call Mary MacDonald at 332-9355.