NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – Democrats and Republicans cast aside party differences for one night in New Rochelle, as they came together for a non-partisan event as efforts continue to save the local YMCA pool.
Local, county and state officials – led by New Rochelle Legislator Jim Maisano and Westchester County Clerk Tim Idoni – teamed with local good Samaritans at the YMCA as the “ Be a Lifesaver ” fundraiser continues as they seek to save the pool, which has been a community hub for decades.
Last year, while doing work on the drop roof over the pool, contractors discovered that steel beams in the ceiling had been corroded due to moisture that built up throughout the years, forcing the YMCA to replace it. The pool has been closed since last November, prompting the $1.3 million “Be a Lifesaver” fundraising campaign.
More than 150 people attended the latest fundraiser, which raised nearly $30,000. Maisano praised the efforts of local restaurants, which donated all of the food for the event, William O’Shaughnessy and WVOX for being the main sponsor and the various officials that helped make the fundraiser a success.
“I’m proud of our effort to save the New Rochelle YMCA pool,” he noted. “We had a wonderful fundraiser, and so far we have raised $27,000, with more coming in.”
Because it is an independent YMCA, the New Rochelle branch does not receive support from the larger, national YMCA organization. Due to this distinction, officials have been forced to reach out to the community it’s assisted for more than three decades.
Julie Gallanty, the chief executive officer of the New Rochelle YMCA has called the “Be a Lifesaver campaign” the “most critical in the Y’s 30-year history.”
If the organization is unable to raise enough money to make proper repairs and reopen the pool, the entire YMCA may be forced to close, as that is one of the key revenue generators.
“The New Rochelle YMCA provides thousands of families with access to quality, affordable sports, health and educational programming,” New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson said. “It really is one of our city’s vital institutions, and it’s facing a big challenge.”
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