Press Release: June is National Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month

Toledo, OHIO – June marks National Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness about Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia that impact over 55 million people worldwide. Recent studies have shown that physical activity plays a crucial role in reducing the risk of
cognitive decline, emphasizing the importance of staying active at any age.

At the YMCA of Greater Toledo, we are committed to promoting physical activity and overall wellness for our community members. Our dedicated Healthy Living Programs aim to enhance wellness, reduce the risk of disease, and support participants in reclaiming their health. In line with this commitment, we are excited to announce a new initiative designed to assist in Alzheimer’s prevention.

The YMCA of Greater Toledo is proud to introduce BrainSavers, an innovative Alzheimer’s prevention program that is both fun and engaging. This instructor-led program focuses on keeping participants sharp and resilient by emphasizing six essential pillars of a total brain and body healthy lifestyle:

1. Cognitive Fitness
2. Physical Fitness
3. Social Engagement
4. Stress Management
5. Healthful Nutrition
6. Quality Sleep

BrainSavers provides a holistic approach to brain health, incorporating activities and strategies designed to improve cognitive function and overall well-being. 

To participate in BrainSavers, individuals must be members of the YMCA of Greater Toledo. Membership provides access to a wide range of resources and support through our Healthy Living department. Interested members can enroll in the BrainSavers program by visiting our website and completing an online form under the Healthy Living section. Our team is ready to assist and guide you through the enrollment process, ensuring you have the support needed to embark on this journey towards better brain health.

Join us at the YMCA of Greater Toledo in promoting a healthier, more active lifestyle and take a proactive step in Alzheimer’s prevention. Together, we can make a difference in our community’s health and well-being. For more information about BrainSavers and other Healthy Living Programs, please visit our website at or contact our Healthy Living department.


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About the YMCA of Greater Toledo

The YMCA of Greater Toledo is dedicated to strengthening the community through youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. With a wide range of programs and services, we aim to empower individuals to lead healthier lives and foster connections within the community. For more information, visit

YMCA of Greater Toledo and Imagination Station Announce the June Membership Swap

Toledo, OH –  June is the month for double the fun and double the benefits for YMCA of Greater Toledo and Imagination Station Members. Again this year, the two organizations are partnering to hold their Membership Swap for the entire month of June. This partnership allows members of either organization to experience the benefits and programs of the other at no additional cost. 

“We are thrilled to partner once again with Imagination Station for our annual Membership Swap,” said Shonna Moon, Executive Director of Membership of YMCA of Greater Toledo. “This initiative not only provides added value to our members but also fosters a sense of community by connecting families with new experiences.”

“Imagination Station is excited to welcome YMCA members into the science center to discover, learn and make memories,” said Aubry Hall, Membership and Volunteer Manager at Imagination Station. “Summer is the perfect time for families to explore our community. This partnership encourages healthy, active lifestyles while inspiring a love for STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math.”

What: Annual Membership Swap between YMCA of Greater Toledo and Imagination Station

When: June 1 – June 30, 2024

Details: Throughout the month of June, YMCA members will have free access to Imagination Station, Toledo’s hands-on science center, while Imagination Station members can enjoy full access to all YMCA of Greater Toledo facilities. This unique opportunity encourages families to explore new activities, promote physical wellness, and inspire scientific curiosity.

YMCA Members at Imagination Station:

  • Free science center admission for YMCA of Greater Toledo members

Imagination Station Members at YMCA:

  • Free access to YMCA of Greater Toledo branches

  • Participation in fitness classes, enjoy our outdoor swimming pools (Eastern Community YMCA & Sylvania YMCA / JCC), gym facilities and Family Fun Zones 

How to Participate:

Members must present their valid membership card and a photo ID at the respective facility’s front desk to enjoy reciprocal benefits.

For more information about the Membership Swap, visit 




About YMCA of Greater Toledo: The YMCA of Greater Toledo is dedicated to nurturing the potential of kids, promoting healthy living, and fostering a sense of social responsibility. With 10 area branch locations offering a wide range of programs, the YMCA is committed to strengthening the community.

About Imagination Station: Imagination Station provides a critical layer of science enrichment by serving as an educational partner for teachers, schools and parents. It’s with a thoughtful blend of exhibits, experiences, education and excitement that Imagination Station inspires visitors to pursue STEM careers in Northwest Ohio.


Sylvania YMCA/JCC Outdoor Pool Opening – May 25, 2024

Sylvania, OHIO – May 22, 2024 – The Sylvania YMCA/JCC is excited to announce the opening of its outdoor pool for the summer season on Saturday May 25, 2024 at 12pm. The outdoor pool is located behind the branch at 6465 W. Sylvania Ave located in Sylvania, Ohio.

The outdoor pool at the Sylvania YMCA/JCC features three exciting new attractions and summer swim lessons this summer:
● A climbing wall
● A diving board
● A zip line
● Summer Swim Lessons starting at 6-months +
These new additions promise to provide a fun and engaging experience for all
visitors. Access to the outdoor pool is included with membership to any of the 10
area YMCA/JCC branch locations.
Members and the community can register for summer swim lessons at the Sylvania
YMCA / JCC by calling 419.885.4485 or online at,
For more information about the Sylvania YMCA/JCC, please visit,

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About Sylvania YMCA/JCC
The Sylvania YMCA/JCC is dedicated to strengthening the community through youth
development, healthy living, and social responsibility. With a wide range of
programs and facilities, we strive to create a welcoming environment for all.

Wayman D. Palmer to Host Topping Off Ceremony for New Facility

Toledo, OHIO – May 17, 2024 – The Wayman D. Palmer YMCA is set to celebrate a significant milestone in the construction of its new facility with a Topping Off Ceremony on Monday, May 20, 2024. The event will commence at 1pm, bringing together guests including Wayman D. Palmer Board Members, Board of Trustees, staff, volunteers, members, and representatives from The Lathrop Company.

The highlight of the ceremony will be the placement of the final beam, where attendees will have the opportunity to “make their mark” on the structure. Mayor Wade Kapszukiewcz and Brad Toft, President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Toledo, will deliver remarks at 2pm, culminating in the ceremonial signing of the beam.

Toledo Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz said, “This Topping Off ceremony marks a significant step forward in the journey towards a vibrant and inclusive Toledo. With each beam, we’re building not just a structure, but an opportunity to create unity and community. Together, we’re shaping a future
where every neighborhood thrives.”

“The Topping Off Ceremony signifies a significant step forward in the journey towards the opening of the new Wayman D. Palmer YMCA,” stated Brad Toft, President/CEO of the YMCA of Greater Toledo. “We are immensely proud of the progress achieved thus far and eagerly anticipate welcoming the community through the doors of our new facility in the Spring of 2025.”

Located just a few hundred feet away from the current facility, the new Wayman D. Palmer YMCA will feature state-of-the-art amenities including an indoor pool, a modern fitness center, an updated gymnasium, community
gathering spaces, Toledo Public Schools Head Start Early Childhood education facilities, and the T.A.C.K.L.E. Program.


About the YMCA of Greater Toledo
Driven by its founding mission, the Y has been a leading nonprofit committed to strengthening the community for more than 150 years. The Y empowers everyone, no matter who they are or where they’re from, by ensuring access to resources, relationships, and opportunities for all to learn,
grow, and thrive. By bringing together people from different backgrounds, perspectives, and generations, the Y aims to improve overall health and well-being, ignite youth empowerment, and demonstrate the importance of
connections across the greater Toledo community. Learn more at

Contact:  Shonna Moon, [email protected], 419.205.0777

Upcoming Pickleball Tournaments

Get ready to paddle up and show off your skills because the Wayman Palmer YMCA is gearing up for its 1st Annual Juneteenth Pickleball Tournament on June 22!

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, there’s a level of competition for everyone with three categories: Advanced, Intermediate, and Beginner.

Registration is open now, with member teams priced at $30 and non-member teams at $50 per team. Plus, each team will receive a tournament t-shirt, and the winning team in each division will proudly take home a trophy.

But that’s not all! In addition to the Juneteenth tournament, pickleball enthusiasts can also set their sights on the YMCA Mid-East Regional Pickleball Tournament, happening from June 28 to June 30 in Berwyn, PA. This regional event promises fierce competition and the chance to compete for the prestigious title.

What’s more, 39 gold medal winners from the Mid-East Regional Tournament will score a special invitation to the highly anticipated 2025 US Open Pickleball Championships! With registration now open for the regional tournament, it’s time to mark your calendars and prepare for some intense matches.

Exciting news from Pickle4 also adds to the buzz surrounding pickleball competitions. With a switch to Pickleball Den software, the US Open lottery for 2025 will see a ten percent expansion, offering even more opportunities for players to secure their spot in pickleball history. And fear not, as the additional invites from Y-USA won’t affect the previously announced 350 slots, ensuring the largest lottery in US Open history in 2025.


So, whether you’re a seasoned pickleball pro or just starting out on the court, there’s never been a better time to get involved in the action-packed world of pickleball tournaments. Don’t miss out—register today and get ready to serve up some serious fun! 🥒🏓 #PickleballTournaments #YMCAEvents #ServeUpFun

Rainy Day Blessings

All rainfall in some way or another is a blessing despite the inconvenience we may feel it causes.
Today, the fortieth day after the celebration of Easter on March 31st this year, is Ascension day.
It is the day recorded in the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles in the Holy Bible when Jesus ascended in Heaven after His Resurrection. Cathedral and Church bells🔔⛪🔔 in many parts of Christendom will ring today to remind us of this special event.
An old tradition has it that Ascension day rain is especially good  if it touches you as it has touched the Lord Jesus as He ascends to Heaven. So let today’s rain fall on you even if it is for a second or two.🌧️
The Hymn written by Charles Wesley, the famous Methodist Clergyman
describes this day well:
Hail the day that sees Him rise, Alleluia!
Highest Heaven its Lord receives,
Yet He loves the earth He leaves,
Though returning to His throne,
Still He calls us all His own, Alleluia!🙏🙏🙏
May you feel showers of blessing this day! Amen.
– Abimbola Fajobi, Director of Christian Mission

Walk/Bike to School Day Activities Encourages Safer Routes for Biking and Walking in School Neighborhoods

YMCA of Greater Toledo Partners raising awareness for safe routes 
The Toledo Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program, of Live Well Greater Toledo and the YMCA along with their partners including the Toledo Public School District (TPS), the City of Toledo Transportation Dept., Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) and numerous other participating organizations will join students and families from Garfield Elementary, 1103 N. Ravine Pkwy., Toledo, OH   43605 on May 08, 2024 to raise the awareness of the need for safer routes for bicycling and walking to school.
Walk to School Day activities can better the health of students through physical activity, increase student attendance, better academic achievement, create community connectedness, and enhance the air quality around schools. Through a partnership between the Toledo Safe Routes to School program and the City of Toledo, routes most frequently used by students are being improved through infrastructure projects, such as; sidewalk installation, curb bump outs, pedestrian refuge islands, and countdown crosswalks.
On May 8, 2024, families with students from Garfield Elementary were encouraged to utilize a remote drop off location at a nearby park (see attached map). Parents of students who typically are bussed or driven to school can utilize the remote drop off as an alternative on this day. Adult volunteers from multiple organizations and the school district will walk the students to school along a route located on N. Ravine Pkwy. This event is supported by the ODOT Safe Routes to School program that provides funding for school districts to encourage students to walk or bike to school. These programs also allow students to practice pedestrian safety, get physical activity before school, reduce traffic congestion around schools, and create healthy habits to last a lifetime. Multiple schools throughout the district will be celebrating National Walk and Bike to School Day on May 8th .  
This program is being organized by the Toledo SRTS program, and made possible by funding provided through the ODOT Safe Routes to School Grant. The YMCA was awarded a two year rolling grant for $114,280.00 to continue SRTS education and encouragement programs in the TPS District and to update the current district School Travel Plan (STP) that will identify the infrastructure and non-infrastructure barriers students encounter daily that make it difficult to walk or bicycle to and from school safely and comfortably. The STP update will study the neighborhoods of all 41 K-8 elementary buildings and the high school buildings. The YMCA has been providing non-infrastructure programs such as walk and roll to school days, bicycle fix-it and safety days, walking school buses, and much more in the TPS district since 2014.   
 Available for interviews the day of the event
Jenny Hansen, YMCA of Greater Toledo, SRTS Coordinator 
Stephanie Bartlett, City of Toledo Transportation Dept.   

Six Tips to Keep in Mind for National Water Safety Month

Six Tips to Keep in Mind for National Water Safety Month

May is National Water Safety Month. When the weather starts to heat up, the pools, lakes, oceans, rivers and other bodies of water start calling! While swimming can be a very enjoyable activity this summer, it is important to remind all parents and caregivers of the importance of water safety. The YMCA of Greater Toledo is sharing these six tips on how children can stay safe in and around the water.

Tip # 1: Make sure children know to always ask permission before going in or near the water.

Teaching your children to be water smart is the first step in water safety – be sure they understand the importance of asking permission before going in or near the water.

Tip # 2: Never swim alone without a water watcher.

When children are swimming, make sure they are actively supervised at all times. Teach your children that they should only swim in locations where a lifeguard is on duty, or where a responsible adult agrees to watch the children in the water without distractions.

Tip # 3: Supervise your children whenever they’re in or near water.

Whether it’s bath time or taking a dip in a pool or waterfront, make sure your children are within arm’s reach at all times.

Tip # 4: Don’t engage in breath holding activities.

Both adults and children should not hold their breath for a prolonged amount of time while swimming, as this can be dangerous.

Tip # 5: Wear a life jacket.

Inexperienced or non-swimmers should always wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket while in or around the water.

Tip # 6: Don’t jump in the water to save a friend who is struggling in deep water.

If an adult or child finds their friend in deep water unexpectedly, their natural reaction may be to jump in the water to try and save them. Even if they are a great swimmer, a panicked person will overpower them, pulling the rescuer under water. The Y’s Safety Around Water program teaches the “reach, throw, don’t go” concept of using a long object to reach for them, and pull them to safety. By using this technique, an adult or child can help their friend without compromising their own safety.

Mental Health Community Care at the Y

Mental Health Community Care at the Y

The YMCA of Greater Toledo is always encouraging community members to care for themselves and others.

Mental health is how we think, feel and act. At the Y, we recognize that we all have mental health, and mental health is an important part of our overall health and social-emotional well-being, as well as a core component of our identity.

The Y supports the mental health of individuals and communities in all the work we do to help people reach their full potential—whether that’s teaching life skills to youth in our summer camps, supporting our staff, helping people achieve their best physical health or helping newcomer immigrants access services. This type of non-clinical support is called “community care” and includes:

· Understanding mental health as something we all have—it is how we think, feel, and act.

· Applying positive self-care practices routinely.

· Engaging in conversations in a genuine way, with empathy and the intent of building meaningful relationships.

· Understanding and applying trauma-informed guiding principles when interacting with others.

· Understanding the impact of social determinants of health, systemic racism, discrimination and marginalization on mental health.

· Modeling emotion regulation, co-regulation, and effective coping skills.

· Recognizing signs that someone may be struggling.

· Connecting individuals to primary and specialty support when needed.

· Providing initial response in crisis situations.

· Initiating dialogue and collaborating with others to embed mental health informal care support throughout the community.

All the above are informed by practices found in social-emotional learning, trauma-informed care and suicide prevention. Through this work, we can reduce the risk and impact of mental illness, provide early intervention, and support the process of healing and recovery. We also provide a critical bridge to formal mental health care providers when needed.


Everyone can play a role in mental health community care. In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, the Y encourages you to identify simple ways you can care for yourself and others, such as:


· Using your powers of observation to notice when someone may be struggling with a hard day, moment or situation.

· Intentionally asking “how are you?” and encouraging honest answers so others can share and feel heard.

· Bringing empathy, compassion and kindness to your daily interactions.

· When you notice someone struggling, connecting them to mental health resources like the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800-273-8255 or

The Impact of Volunteer Coaches: Empowering Youth Through Sports at YMCA

The Impact of Volunteer Coaches:
Empowering Youth Through Sports at YMCA

Did you know that every year, the YMCA of Greater Toledo’s Youth Sports program introduces over 4,5000 children to the world of sports and teamwork? It’s an incredible opportunity to shape young lives and foster a love for physical activity that lasts a lifetime. But to continue making this impact, we need your help.

Volunteer coaches play a crucial role in our program, providing more than just instruction on the field. They create a safe and supportive environment where children can learn and grow, instilling values like teamwork, sportsmanship, and perseverance along the way. By dedicating just a few hours each week, volunteer coaches have the power to make a significant difference in a child’s life.

Becoming a coach at the YMCA means becoming part of a larger family—a community united by a shared mission to empower youth and strengthen communities. While prior coaching experience is helpful, what truly matters is a willingness to serve as a mentor and role model for young athletes.

Our volunteer coaches receive training, equipment, and resources to ensure they feel confident and prepared to lead their teams. Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or someone who simply wants to give back, there’s a place for you in our Youth Sports program.

If you’re interested in making a positive impact in your community and empowering the next generation of athletes and leaders, consider becoming a volunteer coach at the YMCA. Visit the Member Service Desk at your local branch or contact the Sports Coordinator to learn more about how you can get involved.

Together, we can make a difference—one child at a time. Join us in building a healthier, stronger community through the power of sports and mentorship.