Starting at 6 a.m. Friday, Jan. 30, the GRU Jaguar Wellness Center will celebrate its grand reopening with a day filled with giveaways, free food, and fun.
“It’s fun and games all day long,” said Patsy Davis, Wellness Center Manager. “We want to say thank you for putting up with us during this time.”
Renovations began Sept. 25, and though the facility was only actually closed for a single week, Davis said it’s felt as if the process has been going on forever.
The building was built in 2003 to fill needs far different than the ones it’s filling now.
“When we consolidated, we went from 2,000 students to 7,000 students,” Davis said. “Now, we have freshmen living in the residence hall behind us.”
And with more student housing being planned for the immediate area, the Wellness Center is poised to be the focal point for the new, integrated GRU campus.
“From the very beginning, we’ve been the hub, because this is the only place on both campuses where every school comes together,” Davis said. “You’re going to meet somebody from the School of Business, the School of Medicine. This is really the social meeting place.”
With the new shuttle schedule making it even easier for Summerville students, staff, and faculty to make the trip down the hill, and with the new paint job, including the Jaguar logo on the basketball court, giving it a unified feel, Davis said the center is shaping up to be what she’s wanted it to be.
“Before, all the screens were an aqua blue and yellow and pink,” she said. “Now it’s much more university focused.”
While the screens and the fresh, coordinated paint are probably the most obvious changes, the infrastructure changes might be the most important.
“We’ve added more data ports and more electrical ports in order to add more equipment to allow for all the new students and members,” she said. “People aren’t happy if they can’t get their ESPN when they’re on the stair climber.”
She also took the opportunity to reposition the treadmills on the second floor so that they face out the big, showcase windows.
Other improvements include all new LED lighting fixtures, the replacement of all carpet and most existing rubber flooring, 20 pieces of Hammer Strength plate loaded equipment, a new scoreboard, and a new, stylish front desk.
Student Membership fees for the Jaguar Wellness Center are paid with tuition. For all GRU and GRHealth faculty and staff, it’s $19 a month, which can be automatically deducted from an employee’s paycheck.
Giveaways at the grand reopening include an Ozone Ultra Shock Mountain Bike, water bottles, and T-shirts. Coffee, water, and snacks will be available throughout the day, along with free chair massages from 11 a.m.-4 p.m., group exercise demonstrations from 1-3 p.m., free BMI and Body Fat Assessments, cooking demonstrations by Whole Foods, trivia games, and an appearance by Al-E-Cat.
Group exercise demonstration schedule:
1:00 p.m.— CARDIO STRENGTH- DEBI
1:30 p.m.— ZUMBA- DEBI
2:00 p.m.— R.I.P.P.E.D. – ANGELA
2:30 p.m.—TABATA BOOT CAMP – ANGELA
Whole Foods is an official sponsor and will provide coffee and bagels in the morning along with demonstrations and games throughout the day.