Sunday, January 22, 2012

Orange Co. Gymnastics & Open Gym

Update 3/11: Well, then, that was joyous but short-lived.  Due to zoning issues Orange County Gymnastics had to move out of UMall.  March through April 2011 they will be at 1714 Legion Road in Chapel Hill, after which time they will be moving in to and announcing their new permanent location.  Stayed tuned to their website.

Our Fitness Challenge post is running late this week (we're parents, it happens) so while you bite your nails waiting for that, I thought I would share with you some information on Orange County Gymnastics.  There has been a lot of interest in and chatter about this little gym!

This spot is in a prominent location in University Mall.  But did you know this is actually the old Sport Art Gymnastics, moved?  So same owners, a lot of the same staff (although Nancy had to leave due to some physical ailments, unfortunately), and same equipment. Just a better location.

Here's the scoop we've got for you: the idea is for Orange County Gymnastics to relocate back to a renovated Homestead Road location at some point in the future.  HOWEVER, they are interested in staying in University Mall if they can get the right lease terms.  Anyone else with me when they say that they would much prefer UMall?  Anyone?  Bueller?  If you feel strongly, you can engage in a grassroots campaign to keep them where they are - get on University Mall's Facebook page and/or email them and let them know what you think.

Ok, politics done, let's talk about the Open Gym.  We're already reviewed the classes (which we liked for their laidback, neighborhood feel, their flexibility, as well as their reasonable prices), so I will fill you in now on what they call "Family Fun Gym."

One of the things about Gymboree Play & Learn that was great was that they had open gym times, but not so great was that you could only use those times if you were actively enrolled in a class.  The Tumble Gym in Southern Village has open gym time for anyone but isn't in the best location for everyone.  So Orange County Gymnastics is on to something when they started scheduling a lot of Family Fun Gym times.

For Family Fun Gym kids ages 18 months to 18 years old can come to a 45 minute open session of play.  ALL of the equipment is available for use.  There are instructors and supervisors present (3 instructors to 20-some-odd kids when I took C to this, everything seemed in control).  The cost is $10 for the first child and $5 for siblings.  (Note that this is actually a little more than The Tumble Gym's open gym rates.)

If your child is over 3 years old (or, if you negotiate with the front desk folks, a mature 2 1/2 year old) parents can actually leave the children and come back later to get them.  So you can head over A Southern Season and do some shopping/eating or go the new Joe Van Gogh coffee cart outside of the Library location.  Beauty.

Right now the Family Fun times are listed for the weekdays on the Orange County Gymnastics website (see below).  Weekend times are not listed as of the time of this publication since they will be changing.  Right now Orange County Gymnastics is putting together their weekend class schedule, which will affect open gym times.  Everything should be finalized in the next 2-3 weeks and the website will reflect weekend open gym times.  In the meantime, call to find out the open times for the weekends but in general they've been running every other hour.

Orange County Gymnastics also has a KinderCamp program, currently on Friday mornings.  Kids ages 3 -5 can come and play for 3 hours while parents leave to take care of errands, chores, or, again, shopping/eating at A Southern Season.

Because this is a temporary location the gym studio isn't the swankiest we've seen (and we've seen a lot).  The dry wall is roughly patched in places and it could really use a coat of paint inside.  But it is safe, fun, and kid-tested for enjoyment.

This was a great cold-dreary day weekend outing for us.  As one parent said: "It is so easy to get the children in to the gym; so hard to get them out."  So it must be good.

Orange County Gymnastics
University Mall
201 Estes Drive
Chapel Hill


At January 23, 2012 at 4:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who ever wrote this review....Thanks you!!! Coach Nancy misses you all. And who knows I may be back. Still keep in touch with many parents and kids! oxoxox to you all! Good luck Tim!

At January 23, 2012 at 9:24 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

Did you say $10 for 45 minutes? We went two weekends ago and it was $5.

I get so frustrated with this type of price structure, and I only have ONE these places realize it only cost $5 to get into Marbles Kids Museum and you can stay the whole day?

Ranting aside, they are really nice people! But our family will be hard pressed to go back at this price.

At January 24, 2012 at 8:04 AM , Blogger allison c said...

No, it was definitely $10 per child for the weekend rates for everyone there ($5 for siblings). We made sure we were there early so as not to miss a single minute of the 45-minutes! And yes, they were really nice. By the way, Tumble Gym is cheaper if you can make it out there...

At March 4, 2012 at 9:01 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Location has changed again, see web site for details.


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