Rockbridge Area YMCA moves into a ballroom for childcare

Published: Dec. 7, 2020 at 7:12 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) - The Gin Hotel sees weddings and parties, but for the next couple weeks, the ballroom has a new function. Class is in at the hotel, thanks to the Rockbridge Area YMCA.

“We had about 17 to 20 kids on a waiting list for the next two weeks that had nowhere to go for childcare,” said Bobbie Wagner, Rockbridge Area YMCA Executive Director. “And the Y had no space to host the childcare.”

“With everything going on, you know, everybody’s getting creative throughout the world to help out in any way,” said Bret Garrison, of the hotel’s operator, Up to Par Management. “And this is just a small piece that we can do but it makes a huge impact on the community for us.”

So the need for space, plus empty ballroom, equals a solution.

“If you would have told me at the beginning of 2020 that the YMCA would be hosting childcare in the Gin Hotel in a ballroom, I would have laughed at you,” Wagner said. “But now here we are for the next two weeks.”

“We’re glad to have people in the building, that’s the main thing, socially distanced,” said Garrison. “And again if it’s a classroom-style event, that works, and we’ll look forward to the future of getting back to normal business at some point.”

But until then, this odd couple are working to give parents a break.

“We will keep rolling with the punches and change as needed,” Wagner said.

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