The YMCA of Middle Tennessee broke ground on the expansion of the Brentwood Family YMCA as part of its "One Brentwood" plan that has so far seen $7.8 million raised of its $9 million goal.

The expanded facility is expected to be complete in 2023. Upon completion, it will be renamed to the Brentwood Family YMCA Margaret Burnett Turner Center, in honor of the philanthropist and Williamson County resident who died in 2019

Speakers included Brentwood Y Advisory Board Chair George Buck, Maryland Farms Brentwood Y Association Chair Catherine Birdwell, Brentwood Family YMCA District Executive Director Steven Saxton, Brentwood Family YMCA Operations Executive Director Roger Grove, Brentwood Mayor Rhea Little, YMCA of Middle Tennessee President Chris Tointon, YMCA of Middle Tennessee Chief Development Officer Julie Sistrunk, Maryland Farms YMCA Executive Director Jodi Schroer, YMCA of Middle Tennessee Board Chair Liz Wilson and local businessman and philanthropist Cal Turner Jr.

"One of the most exciting elements of our new Y is our new community wing that is being developed to accommodate these partnership opportunities including our community kitchen," Buck said. 

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Brentwood Y Advisory Board Chair George Buck and Maryland Farms Brentwood Y Association Chair Catherine Birdwell.

The "One Brentwood" plan was announced in August 2020, and the combined facility is expected to have expanded and enhanced wellness and group exercise areas, transformed youth spaces including Y-PLAY child watch for infants to 6 year olds.

"Right now we are hyper-focusing on how this project can affect our community and to serve our needs the best," Birdwell said. "With our enhanced facility, the ladies in our breast cancer program will have enhanced wellness facilities for their small support groups. The teens and youth, that space is going to double in size and that space will have energetic programs, it will be very innovative and it will give them the opportunity to try new things, to grow and to learn in a very safe learning space."

The upgraded facility will also see a STEM lab, splash pad and a continued focus on the Y's Full Circle outreach program for people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.

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"Their space is going to be dedicated to fit their needs," Birdwell told the crowd of around 100 people. "So everything that we're doing with this new project is because of this community and because of people like you."

The crowd also heard from Donna Reels, a teacher at Sunset Elementary, and her son Micah, who is a part of the Y's Full Circle community. They both spoke of the positive impact of the YMCA and the Full Circle program on their lives.

"Thank you for accepting me and helping me grow as a citizen of Brentwood," Micah Reels told the crowd who responded with cheers and a standing ovation.

In June the Y announced an agreement to sell its Maryland Farms property in 2023.

The Maryland Farms Y will continue to operate as usual for up to two more years, while renovation and expansion projects continue at the Y's Concord Road facility. When those renovations are complete, the Y expects to complete the property sale. 

"What a great addition to the city of Brentwood," Little said.

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YMCA of Middle Tennessee President Chris Tointon.

Tointon announced a new partnership St. Thomas Health, which will see the hospital network provide health and wellness services to Y members, including primary care and cardiac rehab.

"As non-profits, it's really important to us to find ways to collaborate, to share recourses and to make sure that we're being good stewards of our donor dollars and our community dollars," Tointon said. 

Turner spoke about the impact of the Y and the legacy of his wife, who died two years to the day of the groundbreaking ceremony, thanking the organizers for their dedication of the future community facility in her honor.

"The Y does bring these 'wow' moments to life, and I know that there will be many more of them here in the future, and I am deeply honored for this place to be named for Margaret Burnett Turner," Turner said. "Thank you for our family's opportunity to make that happen."