YMCA closures set to affect about 4,000 Tenn. households - WKRN News 2

YMCA closures set to affect more than 4,000 Tenn. households

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Some Middle Tennessee YMCA locations plan to close down due to financial struggles.

YMCA facilities in Hermitage, Cool Springs and Maury County are planning to shut-down at the end of the year, affecting around 4,000 Middle Tennessee households, due to long-running financial difficulties.

According to YMCA officials, 20 other facilities will remain open.

News 2 spoke with residents in the affected areas who said the upcoming closures are a huge loss to the community.

"I think we were all disappointed," resident Eric Witgenstein said. "It has more of a neighborhood feel than some of those big chains, so we are all a little disappointed."

Resident William Hadden added, "It was a surprised. People get used to it and its convenient and a part of the neighborhood. You get used to stuff being here, you take it for granted sometimes."

The Maury County YMCA is expected to close their doors by the beginning of 2014. The Cool Springs location has already closed after mold was discovered in the facility in mid-August.

In a news release by YMCA officials from September, the organization said the closures will save $740,000 annually.

"In each of these cases, there had always been historic, significant and large operating losses and we just did not feel there was a way to change that outlook and that trend," explained Jessica Fain with the YMCA.

According to reports, YMCA President and CEO John Mark "Journey" Johnson said he is set to retire and move back to Virginia to be closer to his grandchildren.

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