It’s fun to play at the Y-M-C-A!

Downriver Family Y celebrates its 80th birthday

The Downriver Family YMCA, located on Northline Road near I-75, invited a few friends over on June 11 and celebrated 80 years of serving the Downriver Community.

The YMCA is an inclusive organization of men, women and children joined together by a shared commitment to nurturing the potential of kids, promoting healthy living, and fostering a sense of social responsibility. 

Located in the heart of Southgate since 2003, the Downriver Family YMCA has a fully equipped community facility that includes, a health and wellness center, aerobics and functional training studios, an indoor therapeutic pool, workout child watch, sauna, indoor running and walking track, indoor pool and gymnasium. The Y also has an elevator, full locker rooms and wi-fi.

The Downriver Family YMCA has provided over one million dollars in scholarships to Downriver residents. Thanks to the generous support of YMCA donors thousands of children and families have had the opportunity to learn to swim, attend summer camps and to access health/wellness resources all year round.

The Downriver YMCA began in 1941 and it consisted of an office and committee rooms in a house at 2956 Biddle Avenue in Wyandotte.  

YMCA work expanded rapidly and a permanent location was identified in 1943. The YMCA purchased property at the corner of Chestnut and Biddle streets in Wyandotte.

The Downriver YMCA represented the first “family” YMCA branch including boys and girls as well as men and women.

In 1959, the YMCA and YWCA together constructed a new YM-YWCA building on Fort street and Eureka for a cost of $850,000. In 1968 an addition to the building added two pools and the YMCA retained full responsibility for the facility in 1998.

In 2002, the YMCA and the City of Southgate conceived of a new facility to expand services to all the communities in the Downriver community.  

The new facility tripled the amount of kids, families, and seniors served by the Downriver YMCA.  

The current facility, The Southgate Fun and Fitness Center constructed through the foresight of the citizens of the city of Southgate, opened to the public on May 11, 2003 and has been the home of the Downriver YMCA ever since.

The YMCA has been an amazing part of the Downriver Community for more than eight decades. Hopefully, this great neighbor will be around for decades more.