Coal Creek YMCA open with a Northwest feel

Cozy chairs, free Wi-Fi and a river-rock fireplace welcomed parents to the newly opened Coal Creek Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) branch.

The lounge, which overlooks the pool, and family changing rooms are just a few ways the branch is helping parents.

“This facility will allow us to serve all of those families better,” said Michele Petitti, the YMCA’s Eastside Director of Development.

The Coal Creek facility opened its doors Aug. 7.

However, the project wasn’t without dilemma. About two weeks before opening day, a pipe in one of the two gyms bursted ruining the newly installed hardwood floors.

“We hadn’t even bounced a ball in it yet,” Petitti said.

All else appeared well, as eager families met long lines of those joining the branch.

Its goal is getting 2,800 memberships by Christmas, Petitti said. “We’re way ahead of target.”

Hardwoods and rock masonry give the 49,000-square-foot building a northwest feel, and giant windows fill the grand entry with light.

The Cardio and Training Center dominates the top floor, and has a special room for wheel-chair accessible equipment.

Across the lounge the Adventure Zone draws in kids with tumbling mats, a jungle gym and crafts, while a daycare accepts babies as young as 6 months old.

“This is great because it’s good for our whole family,” said Newcastle’s Crissandra Fry, as she worked out on a bike with her 13-year-old son.

To get a break from the noise, sneak down a hallway, past a massage table and into the reflection room, which boasts bamboo floors, chic lighting and views of the surrounding forest.

“There are so many windows, and out of all of the you see green,” Petitti said. “There is a whole network of trails behind us.”

The branch intends to use the nearby Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park trails with group hiking, she said.

Downstairs a youth center provides a place for teens to hangout, and a studio is full of pink exercise balls and hand weights.

Traditionally the YMCA has one large gym, but it decided to split the gym into two with windows and doors between.

Likewise the pool is also split into a lap pool and a pool for recreation. There isn’t a diving board, but there is a whirlpool.

Most of the staff members come from Bellevue’s Lake Heights branch, which hosted childcare and after school programs.

“We just kind of evolved,” Petitti said.


Coal Creek YMCA

M-F: 5 a.m.-10 p.m.

S-S: 8 a.m.-6 p.m.

13750 Newcastle Gold Club Road, Newcastle

(425) 282-1500,

Celeste Gracey can be reached at or 425-255-3484, ext. 5052.

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