Easley YMCA launches campaign to build $17.5M campus.

The Easley YMCA announced a $3 million capital campaign on Tuesday to build new facilities on the same grounds where generations of Y members have participated in the organization's activities since 1960.

The campaign is part of an overall $17.5 million building plan to bring the Easley YMCA's facilities to a level that matches its modern campuses in Pickens and Powdersville. Although the Easley campus is the original home to the organization now called the YMCA of Easley, Pickens and Powdersville, it is the least used, hampered by its aging facilities and tight space.

As part of Tuesday's announcement, YMCA President and CEO Sid Collins announced a new name for the facilities: the Easley YMCA at the McKissick Campus. Smyth McKissick III, who as a young boy held his father's hand as the family accepted the first membership in 1961, was presented a lifetime membership for his family.

McKissick is chairman of the Clemson University Board of Trustees and CEO of Alice Manufacturing Co. The McKissick family and Alice Co. have supported the YMCA in Easley from the beginning, with E.S. McKissick being part of the first board selected on Aug. 9, 1957. The family also donated the land.

Collins pointed out that many of the people leading the current capital campaign are the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the organization's founders in Easley.

To meet the future needs of the Easley community, the new Easley YMCA at the McKissick Campus will include a 55,500 square foot YMCA with state-of-the-art cardio and strength centers, dedicated group exercise and spin rooms, and a functional training room with indoor and outdoor workout spaces.

A full-court basketball gym will have an elevated walking track that features an enclosed indoor slide down to the Y's lobby. A nursery and a childwatch room will allow parents to exercise while Y staff care for their children, and a teen room will offer a place for youth to hang out, according to a news release.

The campus will include a new aquatic complex with a lap pool, zero-entry play pool with water features and large water slides. Two athletic fields, multiple playgrounds around the campus and a half-mile walking track around the site will complete the Easley YMCA at the McKissick Campus, the release said.

The existing 22,000-square-foot YMCA...

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