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Northwest Iowa Rec Center hopes to reach out to community members

submitted Photo contributed Students participate in a volleyball tournament Monday during the grand opening week.

SHELDON, Iowa -- On the fringe of Northwest Iowa Community College (NCC) sits a large, red-roofed building also known as the Lifelong Learning and Recreation Center.

"Even though it's on the NCC campus, the community can participate in the activities we have going on," said facility coordinator Greta Giese.

Getting the community involved is exactly what the folks at the Lifelong Learning and Recreation Center are trying to do as their grand opening activities kicked off Monday and continues throughout the week.

Six free classes -- Boot Camp, Pilates, Zumba, Strength Training, Core and Ballistic Strength -- will be coordinated in half-hour blocks from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. today.

"They will all be intro classes so nobody has to feel intimidated," Giese said as she encouraged community members to try more than one class. "Zumba is a Latin-inspired dance aerobics class, and we're really excited to bring that to our community."

Wednesday is the highlight of the grand-opening week with a senior citizens morning session followed by a celebration supper.

In collaboration with the Department of Continuing Education, the recreation center will be offering a free breakfast as well as a Bingo session that will run simultaneously with three wellness education classes -- Healthy Choices for 55 and Above, Strength Education, and Balance Education -- from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.

"We have some experts in the field, which will help navigate some question they might have," Giese added.

The evening's agenda will be a perfect family event complete with grilled pork burgers and basketball games coupled with prizes to be won.

"We'll also have tours of both the rec center facility and the main campus for those who've never been to NCC or are curious about the different things we have campus-wide," she explained.

The 38,000-square-foot facility is equipped with a three-lane walking/jogging track, a basketball court with college-level dimensions, Matrix cardiovascular equipment, a strength training room and aerobics rooms.

A variety of six-week long classes will begin during the third week of September, and a second installment of classes will start in November.

Apart from classes, the National Exercise Trainers Association (NETA) will be at the facility in November to train and certify individuals interested in becoming personal trainers or group exercise instructors.

"We have mostly been travelling to Sioux Falls, Minneapolis or Omaha for certification, but now we can offer them locally," Giese said about the convenience of the new location for NETA to utilize.

Structured membership pricings are available for community members at the Northwest Iowa Lifelong Learning and Recreation Center. For further information, please contact Giese at (712) 324 - 2493.