Sharon gym anxious to welcome back members after holiday shutdown

Gyms and recreation centers in Pennsylvania had to close around Thanksgiving for three weeks to slow the spread of COVID-19

SHARON, Pa. (WKBN) – Pennsylvania businesses that have been shut down for the last three weeks due to the COVID-19 mitigation order are getting ready to open again Monday. A gym in Sharon is looking forward to welcoming clients again.

Many of those orders, including for gyms and recreation facilities, are lifting in the state Monday.

Pa. restaurants can increase indoor dining capacity starting Jan. 4

The directors at Buhl Club said they’ve been hard at work over the last few weeks preparing for when they could reopen. They had to close again around Thanksgiving for three weeks.

Buhl Club staff are anxious to see their members in person, but aimed to make the shutdown time as productive as possible to get ready for the new year.

“It makes us sad our members couldn’t be here over the holidays, especially because we’ve done everything that we’ve been asked to do to keep it safe. It’s been difficult,” said Michelle Bower, program director.

“We took this time also to do an online series of what our wellness room looks like,” said Krista Redick, wellness director. “All of the equipment that we have here in the room, how to use it properly, how to set it up and how to clean it.”

The directors hope this orientation will help both old and new members feel comfortable using the facility.

They also did a deep clean of the club and posted online workouts to allow their members to stay active through December.

Bower said this year has been difficult, but Buhl Club is thankful for its membership throughout 2020.

The club is still expecting business to be impacted by COVID-19, especially in January, which is typically busy because of New Year’s resolutions.

Still, Buhl Club has received interest from new members.

“Thanksgiving to now, we’ve had several new members already contact us who want to sign up and we’ve already processed that. So I do see us still showing an increase,” Redick said.

“A smaller increase than what we saw a year ago, obviously, but as she said, we saw more action in here that week after Thanksgiving before we had to close again, unfortunately, for three weeks,” Bower said.

In a typical January, the directors said the club is a packed house and group classes are full. Buhl Club plans to follow rules set forth by the state, which ask recreation facilities to open at 50% occupancy and require masks.

Based on new applications they’re seeing, Redick and Bower hope January will be the busiest month they’ve seen in at least six months.

They said they’re ready for what 2021 holds and look forward to pivoting based on whatever changes come.

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