Friday, April 16, 2010

Carondelet Park Rec Plex "We never turn anyone away because of an inability to pay."

That's a quote from the YMCA website.
We never turn anyone away because of an inability to pay!

No one is turned away from the YMCA of Greater St. Louis because of an inability to pay. Financial scholarships are available at all branches thanks to the generous support of those who give to our annual YMCA Partner Campaign. Applications for assistance are available at any branch service center or available to download below.

Once completed, bring the application and a copy of your 2009 tax return to the Carondelet Family YMCA.
I've made several posts on the Carondelt Rec Plex on this site.  No other topic has received more page loads, comments and emails than this one.  Most are negative comments complaining about how the city paid for this, and then allowed the YMCA to run it at a premium membership fee.  True, it's not cheap, and it's a big family/personal decision to make room in your budget for this luxury.  It should not be free. Can you imagine that cluster mess?  It's already filled to capacity at peak hours. 

The YMCA is able to run this facility like a business.  It is kept very clean, the staff is attentive and kind, they tolerate very little rude/obnoxious behavior.   This place is very diverse with people of all economic, age and racial backgrounds.  Just visit, I think you'll agree with me.  Do you think the city would be able to maintain this place at this high level?  I'm a city booster, almost to a fault.  But if there is one thing that needs an over haul, it's the nepotism and incompetance that exists with many city and SLPS employees.  Not all, but many.  We have plenty of horror stories regarding the service, demeanor, racist behaviors and ineptitude of so many public school employees it's ridiculous.  The fact that they get away with this is beyond me.  I wouldn't go to the Carondelet rec plex if it was run/staffed like that.

And just to reiterate, anyone is available for financial assistance if you qualify.  If you don't qualify, you should count your blessings that you have the financial means to be independent of help and pay your way.

I can't wait for the outdoor pool area to open.  The grounds are starting to really look beautiful as well.


  1. Replies
    1. Keep the prices high! It keeps most of the thugs and gang bangers out. I say most because there are alot if thieves walking around. Lock your stuff up.

  2. The whole financing structure of this deal stinks to high heaven. Non users are paying through already high sales tax to support the guy who can afford $800-900 a year family membership.

    Your solution is begging for charity and showing my tax returns to a committee. No thanks.

    The little guy is the loser here.

  3. The Carondelet Community Recplex should drop the word "community" from its name. It's a YMCA; there's nothing "community" about a place that has such a high monthly price tag and no option for a member of the COMMUNITY to use it on an occasional basis. They could sell punch cards, or 3-month memberships (I don't want to hang out inside at the Y when the weather's nice), but no -- it's all or nothing.
    It was a mistake to contract with the Y to run the place. As much as the YMCA makes itself out to be a charitble institution, for most of us it's just a high-priced health club. Thank you, but I'll join Club Fitness for $22/month instead.

  4. Hey everyone. I just saw this blog post and your comments. From what I am reading, there are others out there who feel the same way I do about the Y running this place. My feelings about it worsened when, one Saturday morning while I was there a couple of months ago, I saw a charter busload of people unloading in the parking lot and coming into the facility. I wondered who these people were and, after asking the staff, discovered there were missionaries. I asked if they were members and the staff said no, but that the YMCA allows missionaries to use the facility for showers. When I reminded the staff that this facility was not a Y, but a city-owned and taxpayer-financed fitness center being run by the Y, the staff members indicated they had an agreement with the city that would allow missionaries to use the facility for free!!!! I was astonished--we taxpayers get to foot the bill for busloads of people coming to use the facility for free just because the Y is running the place.

    I agree the city couldn't run it better than the Y, but from what I understand, a proper bid procedure was not followed. Since the contract is for 2 years, I'm thinking of agitating the parks department to put the contract out for bid this time. If anyone's interested in helping me agitate, I would welcome the help. Find me on Facebook at

  5. Beth, if this is your only beef with the Carondelet Park YMCA/City owned profit machine, you should be quite pleased. It's a pleasant, positive place that St. Louisian's should be glad to call their own...but, it's expensive. Holly Hills, Boulevard Heights and Carondelet are better places because of this place than

  6. Actually, no, I don't think the surrounding neighborhood is better off. It took public land and public funds to create and build.

    When is that contract due to be renewed?