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Volume 6, Issue 4

Eat This





July-August 2011, Volume 6 Issue 4

YMCA of Birmingham

FRESH. ORGANIC. LOCAL. The new issue of Y Life Birmingham is good to the last megabyte!

Fresh, organic, and local: three buzzwords we’ve all heard, to describe the optimal way to nourish ourselves. Fresh, of course, has a connotation of healthy, but it also lends itself to objects and ideas that are new and exciting. Organic is similar to fresh, but also describes things that spring up spontaneously, without preplanning. Local, well, means just that: local. Nearby. These words perfectly describe this issue of Y Life Birmingham and its theme: “Eat This,” both for the content and the delivery source. First—the content. Personal trainer and nutrition counselor Rachel Bieber shares tips on clean and healthy eating on page 4, followed by a recipe, on page 6, by Caroline Bundy, YMCA Health Initiatives Coordinator, for a delicious pasta salad with sautéed vegetables. Learn how members of the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program are making positive health changes in a deceptively simple way: with pen and paper. That would be page 7, if this were paper. Did you know kids love healthy snacks, like apples and oranges? On page 8 see how the Mountain Brook Branch is getting healthy snacks into the hands of YMCA children across Birmingham. Todd LaPorte is helping folks at the Downtown Branch rethink lunch on the go and how Chef Michael Morris has kids excited about food at Camp Cosby (pages 11-13). Finally, be inspired by Tori Samples and Nikayla Johns, two young ladies who are learning that you’re never too young to establish a “mission” of healthy habits (page 21). Now to the delivery source. This is the first completely digital issue of Y Life Birmingham and there are plenty of new, hot and fresh items to sample, like the new hot links. Every website or e-mail address listed in this issue is live, allowing you click on it and gather information online or send an e-mail to a YMCA staff member. We hope you enjoy this fresh, organic and local way to get your YMCA news, and that it tides you over until the next print issue in September. Then: come back for seconds!

Officers CHAIRMAN Phyllis Hall VICE CHAIRMAN Joseph Mays, Jr. TREASURER Michael Temple SECRETARY David Woodruff

Board Members Tracy Morant Adams Charles Ball Tim Blair Cecil Bostany Milton Bresler Libby Carpenter Denise Dauphin Harold Goings Ann Haas Roderick Hawkins Robert L. Holman Wayne Houston Mallie Ireland Anthony A. Joseph Robert E. Kelly Scott Kenny Tom L. Larkin John Lauriello Alan Lott Harrison Manning Yvonne McBeth Ann D. McMillan Judge John Ott Leigh Davis Perry Henry Ray, Jr. Allen Rice Joey Ritchey Lloyd Shelton Reeves Sims, Jr. Walker Sorrell Judge Andra Sparks Cedric Sparks Michael Suco Jami Wadkins Chip Watts Board of Trustees CHAIRMAN Anne Huckstep VICE CHAIRMAN Bill Clark Joe Bluestein Frank James Allen Rushton James W. Shepherd Judge Scott Vowell President and CEO James L. Lombard YLife Birmingham is published five times a year by the YMCA of Birmingham. Copyright 2006 by the Metropolitan Birmingham YMCA. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the permission of the YMCA of Birmingham. YLife Birmingham welcomes letters and story ideas. Please send them to: YLife Birmingham, 2101 4th Avenue North, Birmingham, Alabama 35203 or to YLife Birmingham Staff

Checking In






My Mission



Mission: To put Judeo-Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all. Vision: We will lead our community to become the healthiest in America. United Way Partner.

CheckingIn NEWS FROM AROUND THE BIRMINGHAM YMCA Hispanic Intervention Program Launches The YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program, in partnership with Cahaba Valley Health Care and the Hispanic Interest Coalition of Alabama (HICA), will soon be offering the small group, 16-week lifestyle intervention to Birmingham’s Spanish speaking community. Martha Gonzales, a trained YDPP Lifestyle Coach, will be delivering the new translation of the curriculum.

New Members Added to Advisory Board Recently, the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program appointed the members of its Community Advisory Board. Dr. Emily Boohaker of UAB is the Board Chair. The diverse group includes 3 physicians, a Diabetes Educator, a college professor, a YDPP Lifestyle Coach and 2 program graduates.

SAKS Father’s Day Having been founded at the YMCA, Father’s Day has been observed for a little more than 100 years, and even after a century it is still a bit overshadowed by Mother’s Day. Birmingham magazine and Saks Fifth Avenue partnered for the second year to shine a spotlight on a handful of local dads who not only lead their own children by example but who also play important leadership roles in our larger community. On June 16, four fathers were honored at an upbeat Saks in-store event. Spouses, kids, parents, godparents, friends and fans gathered to say, ‘Hip Hip Hooray’ to these men who set the standard in being dads and dedicated do-gooders. The YMCA is the grateful beneficiary of the love and attention garnered on this special evening: Proceeds from Saks men’s clothing sales through the ensuing weekend benefited the Strong Kids financial assistance fund, opening Y doors to neighbors who can’t afford to pay program fees. THANK YOU to Saks Fifth Avenue and Birmingham magazine and to these honorees who are proud to be dads and supportive ‘Y Guys’: • Marcus Abrams, Owner, Home Makers Investments and Acquisitions, Co. • Jay Barker, Radio personality, Jox 94.5 FM • William W. Horton, Partner, Haskell Slaughter Young & Rediker, LLC, Downtown Member • Greg Weyandt, Partner & Director of Operations, The Welch Group, LLC, Mountain Brook Member And, in true YMCA fashion, thank you to all the strong men – and women – in our area who are providing love and support for Birmingham’s children!

Contact Debby LaCruz for more information about the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program at

Above, left to right: Honorees William H. Horton, Jay Barker, Marcus Abrams, and Greg Weyandt. 4 |


Fill In The “Wholes” Switch to whole grain foods, like bread, wraps, crackers, pasta and cut out the processed foods containing white flour and white sugar. It turns to sugar and fat in our bodies, so cutting them out completely and adding whole grains is an easy way to add more fiber and nutrition to your diet.

Complete The Protein Picture Meat is okay, but we should all limit the amount of red meat in our diets and add more lean meats, like chicken, turkey and even bison, a lean red meat that can be hard to find. Also, try to add protein from other sources like beans, nuts and brown rice. These complete proteins are full of vitamins and minerals and easier on your system.

Connect The Dots A lot of people think that they can exercise off a bad diet and eat whatever they want then come to the YMCA and work it off. It doesn’t work that way. In order to have the body that you want, you need the cardiovascular work, the resistance training and you also need to eat clean—taking in fewer foods that are high in sugar, fat, and sodium.

Supercharge Your Diet Superfoods are basically foods that have tons of nutrition, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. They’re just packed full of nutrition and should be a part of any healthy diet. Foods like kale, spinach, and berries—which are high in antioxidants—are great ways to add a boost of nutrition to your meals.

Thanks to our friends at the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham who have awarded $100,000 over two years to help expand

the International Children’s Initiative’ (ICI) from YMCA branches in Alabaster, Greystone and Pelham to Avondale, Downtown, Trussville and Hoover. The program prepares non-Englishspeaking preschoolers to thrive academically and keep pace with their peers in English-speaking kindergarten & elementary school classes. The Y is proud to partner with the CFGB to help hundreds of children become more successful along the education pipeline!

Rachel Bieber is a personal trainer and nutrition counselor at the Shades Valley Family Branch. July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 5

Eat This


Healthy Summer

PASTA SALAD Carbohydrate-heavy foods such as pasta can be an important part of the diet, but they should be consumed in moderation. This is especially true if you have diabetes, as carbohydrate consumption can result in increases in blood glucose levels. On the other hand, the extra fiber you get from whole grain pasta, as opposed to pasta made with refined grains, helps offset the increase in blood glucose other carbohydrate-heavy foods can cause. High-fiber foods such as whole grain pasta can also help lower your cholesterol levels. Barilla’s Whole Grain Rotini Pasta, which I’ve used in this recipe, does not contain any saturated or trans fats and it is also cholesterol and sodium free. Whole grain pasta is also rich in fiber due to the presence of the bran and germ; each serving of Barilla Whole Grain pasta contains 6 grams of dietary fiber and a relatively low 2 grams of sugar. Fresh vegetables are especially high in vitamins, minerals and fiber, and low in calories. The fiber in the vegetables and pasta can help you feel fuller longer. Enjoy!

Caroline Bundy, YMCA Community Health Initiatives Coordinator, demonstrates her recipe for Healthy Summer Pasta Salad.

Click anywhere on the photo to watch a video of Caroline preparing the salad in the Youth Center’s Publix Teaching Kitchen.

WHOLE WHEAT PASTA WITH MIXED SUMMER VEGETABLES INGREDIENTS 2 cups whole wheat rotini (corkscrew) pasta Olive oil Minced garlic ½ pint grape tomatoes, whole 1 yellow squash, sliced 1 zucchini, sliced Broccoli, florets Baby carrots Italian seasoning blend Shaved Parmesan cheese Fresh parsley

COOKING DIRECTIONS • Bring 2 quarts water to a rolling boil. Add pasta and stir. Reduce heat to medium-high to keep a boil, but to keep from boiling over. Stir occasionally. Allow to boil for 10 minutes. • In a deep skillet, add olive oil and minced garlic. Stir until bottom of the pan is coated. Add the tomatoes, squash, zucchini, broccoli and carrots and saute over medium heat. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning. Add ½ cup of the pasta water to keep everything moist. Cover and stir frequently. Vegetables should cook for less than 5 minutes to retain freshness. • Drain the pasta. Spray with a little olive oil. • Add drained pasta to the skillet full of vegetables. Mix well. Sprinkle with shaved Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh parsley, if desired. • Serves 4.

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Active Weight Loss Active Weight Loss Program members in a group workout session. The advice dvice reads simply enough: the key to losing weightt is eating less and getting some exercise. FACT: It isn’tt that simple to break habits that lead to weight gain, nor to then make the kind of positive diet and fitness changes that lead to weight loss and a lifetime of healthy living. The newly-developed YMCA Active Weight Loss Program includes: • Common sense nutritional information that’s easy to fit into your day • Exercise and diet journaling • Group meetings with people with similar goals as you • Group personal training “This is the first major weight loss program at the YMCA that includes exercise and nutrition. In the past, it’s been one or the other,” said Caroline Bundy, Community Health Initiatives Coordinator. “A lot of time and brainstorming have gone into the development of this program, and we are very excited about what it offers participants.” With programs in place at the Greystone, Shades Valley, and Vestavia YMCAs, Active Weight Loss members meet once a week to discuss nutritional topics.

For Ken Hope, a Vestavia YMCA member, the program is helping him make health a priority, and is turning the process from something he feels he has to do into something he wants to do. “Regretfully, I have abused my body with food and neglected my health for far too long,” said Hope. “I signed up for the Active Weight Loss class to augment my personal training. It is my hope that I will come to view physical activity as a hobby rather than as a chore.”

DETAILS One-hour, weekly meeting Private Weigh-Ins Join anytime

LOCATIONS Greystone • Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. Shades Valley • Wednesdays at 6 p.m. Vestavia • Mondays at 6 p.m.

COST (per month)

Greystone leader, Mary Rosser, says one of the best aspects of the program is its personal nature. Participants have the chance to interact with each other, discuss what works and what doesn’t work, and lean on each for support.

$45 YMCA Members $100 Non-Members (Includes free access to all Birmingham YMCA branches while enrolled in the program)

“Leading an Active Weight Loss class has been such a positive experience for the participants and for me as the facilitator. I’ve enjoyed sharing my love of health and fitness and seeing our group bond and support one another through the weeks,” said Rosser. “We are sharing valuable skills that will enable the participants to stop dieting forever and instead adopt a healthier lifestyle with weight loss as an added bonus.”

CONTACT Caroline Bundy at 801-7212 or

July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 7

Eat This


YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program members during an informative session on keeping Diet Journals.

Diabetes Prevention Program

Step 1 towards preventing diabetes: pick up a pen and paper. With simple, low-tech food journals in hand, YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program members write what they have eaten during their first week in the program. Journaling is one of the best bes methods for making immediate immedia and impactful dietary changes that can help someone someo diagnosed with prediabetes diabet prevent the onset of type typ II diabetes. Research has shown that this little s step can lead to big results, according to Debby LaCruz, acc program coordinator. pro “People cut calories by “P around 10 percent when a they simply write down t

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what they eat. Thirty to 50 percent of those who keep a food diary change their eating habits for the better,” LaCruz said. “This adds up to an even greater change for those at risk for diabetes. Just a five to seven percent reduction in body weight can reduce risk for the disease by 58 percent.” Earnestine Stinson knows the value of keeping a food journal. Diagnosed as a pre-diabetic two years ago, she began attending meetings at the Trussville YMCA four months ago and has made significant improvements to her health, including losing over 20 pounds, lowering her cholesterol and even making a friend or two jealous in the process.

She says keeping an accurate food journal has helped her understand what and how much she was eating, and the effects on her body. To say she is diligent about it is an understatement. “Everything I eat during the day I try to write down. Even when I go out I have a little notepad that I carry in my purse,” Stinson said. “Seeing it on that page helps me understand everything I’m eating and makes me feel wonderful, knowing I’m keeping up with it and making positive changes to my diet.” Keeping a food journal helps folks not only keep up with which foods they eat at meals, but it also opens their eyes about portion size and unscheduled



Thirty to 50 percent of those who keep a food diary change their eating habits for the better. Program Coordinator, Debby LaCruz

snacks that are too often forgotten about. “I’m bad about walking through the kitchen and eating a handful of nuts without thinking about it. The journal helps me keep an account of how many calories I eat each day,” Stinson said. “It has also helped me understand portion control much better. I use my measuring cups and measuring spoons so I know exactly how much I’m eating now.” “Keeping a written account of your food intake is extremely important,” LaCruz said, “but it can also overwhelm. What we look for are positive patterns. Is your behavior different on Monday than it was last Saturday, for instance,” she said. Emotional eating is an issue for many people on the verge of a type II diagnosis. LaCruz said that making a note of how you are feeling when you ate at a certain point in the day can be

a valuable step in making changes. “I have the participants put a mark by a meal with an ‘H’, ‘A’, ‘L’, or ‘T’, which means when they ate were they hungry, angry, lonely or tired,” LaCruz said. “That really helps people with emotional eating.” The YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program meets in a group setting with a trained lifestyle coach, helping participants change their lifestyle by learning about healthy eating, physical activity and other positive behavior changes. Topics typically covered include healthy eating, getting started with physical activity, overcoming stress, and staying motivated. To qualify for the program, individuals must be overweight and at high risk for developing diabetes or overweight and have been diagnosed by a physician as someone with pre-diabetes. Contact Debby LaCruz at nodiabetes@ for more information.


DOWNTO DOWNTOWN O Begins Tuesday, Tu ue July 5 | 6 p.m. p

YOUTH CENTER Begins Tuesday, July 12 | 10 a.m.

SHADES VALLEY Begins Tuesday August 16 | 3 p.m.

PELHAM Begins Tuesday, Tu ue July 5 | 5:30 5::3 p.m.

MOUNTAIN BROOK Begins Tuesday July 12 | 5:30 p.m.

TRUSSVILLE Begins Tuesday, August 16 | 9 a.m. & 5:30 p.m.

July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 9

Eat This



SNACKS Its snack time in Summer Day Camp; kids are munching on fresh fruit, granola bars, pretzels, cereal snack bars, even cookies. All weigh in at 100 calories or less and all are healthy options to sugar-loaded candy. Watching YMCA children in either summer camp or the afterschool program enjoying a healthy snack is a leap towards healthy living and is just a start in helping transform the overall wellness of Birmingham’s children. These healthy snacks are provided to every child attending Summer Day Camp and Afterschool care thanks to the forward-thinking fund-raising case volunteers launched at the Mountain Brook YMCA. “Two years ago the Mountain Brook YMCA volunteer board chose healthy snacks for all YMCA Afterschool programs as the case for fund-raising during the annual Strong Kids and Communities Campaign,” said district vice president, Michelle Oliver. The volunteer board raised $40,000 the first year, and used it to provide snacks for over 800 children attending the Afterschool program at every branch. As successful as the effort was, it turned out to just be the beginning of a larger effort. “The board decided to expand the program to provide snacks for every child in summer day camp which presented us with a significant fund-raising challenge of raising $70,000”, Oliver added. “The volunteers not only met that goal, but they exceeded it.”

YMCA Shades Valley Summer Day Camper Trenton Brown enjoys Red Delicious apples when his favorite oranges aren’t available. Need proof the dollars you donated are making a difference? Look no further than Trenton Brown, an eight-year-old summer day camper at the Shades Valley Family Branch. “I like fruit, especially oranges. I like fruit because it’s healthy and it’s good,” Trenton said. “I feel really strong. I could pick up this wall right here.”

Right now, up to 1200 campers are being served healthy snacks for all ten weeks of summer camp. Oliver said that the investment in educating children about healthy choices is paying dividends. “I had one mother who came to me who said when she takes her children to the grocery store, they’re the ones reading the labels and asking her to buy healthier snacks for home,” Oliver said. “She jokingly added that it’s costing her more money each time she goes shopping because the healthy items are more expensive, but she said it’s worth it in the end.”

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Left: The YMCA Youth Center has had a healthy snacks program for several years.

Todd LaPorte. “I’m using Agave syrup which is low glycemic and doesn’t raise your blood sugar. It has fewer calories than sugar, but it’s sweeter than sugar. I put it in my smoothies, my salad dressings, anything that calls for some kind of sweetness. There is no sugar in here,” LaPorte said. LaPorte grows his own tomatoes and herbs at home, but also searches for new items. At ReadiMade, customers may find Quinoa, a very healthy seed similar to coucous, black rice (when available), and an unusual drink made from the aloe vera plant. LaPorte has been pleasantly surprised with the reception his food has received.

One of ReadiMade Cafe’s healthy salad entrees.

ReadiMade Cafe Members of the Downtown Branch now have a healthy, and quick, choice for lunch just a stone’s throw from the locker room. ReadiMade Café, located on the second floor overlooking the indoor swimming pool, offers members healthier alternatives to the fast-food and oversized, processed options that surround the city’s center. Longtime YMCA of Birmingham member, Todd LaPorte, opened ReadiMade in December and has developed a loyal following with sandwiches, salads, smoothies and other items. Todd’s fare is as free as possible from unhealthy additives

while still enhancing the natural flavor of food. “What I’m trying to do is not so much health food. I think people when they hear ‘health food’ think that it doesn’t taste good,” said LaPorte. “Basically it’s just good, clean food. It’s very palatable with lots of fruits, grains and nuts. It’s real simple stuff.” Most of the items on the regularlychanging menu at ReadiMade only consist of four to five ingredients, but that doesn’t mean they’re not adventurous and pleasing to the taste buds. For instance, LaPorte has

created an interesting replacement for mayonnaise that is popular. “I make a cranberry walnut spread that people have encouraged me to ‘bottle and sell in grocery stores.’ It’s real simple. Fresh squeezed orange juice, vinegar, Greek yogurt, cranberries and walnuts,” LaPorte said. “You can put it on a sandwich, or you can dip fruit in it. I made a guy a BLT earlier and he wanted the cranberry spread on it. I thought that was a little unusual, but to each his own.” LaPorte is in the process of developing a line of baked goods —flat breads, leavened muffins, etc.—that he will introduce soon. His main goal is to create flavorful, healthy foods by using sea salt instead of refined salt, and an ingenious replacement for refined sugar.

“One thing I’ve noticed here is people are a little more inclined to try something they’re not used to seeing, and I appreciate that,” LaPorte said. “People don’t realize how simple food can be. It doesn’t have to have a tremendous amount of seasoning, because you lose the flavor and taste of what you’re eating.” ReadiMade Café is open for lunch from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Downtown YMCA, but LaPorte says he will begin offering breakfast, possibly as early as 6 a.m., in the coming weeks. By the fall he hopes to have ReadiMade items for sale at Mountain Brook and Shades Valley and, eventually, at all YMCA of Birmingham branches.

July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 11

Eat This


Camp Cosby’s Cafeteria in full swing at breakfast.

WORTH WRITING HOME ABOUT It’s 8:15 Friday morning, the end of another week of summer camp at Camp Cosby, YMCA’s resident camp. Camper kids are filing into the cafeteria, lining up for breakfast before beginning a busy day of jet skiing, motorbike riding and wilderness hiking. At first glance, this morning’s breakfast appears to be typical summer camp fare—cereals, scrambled eggs, bacon. So why are so many children spreading a dollop of refried beans and fresh tomato salsa on a whole-wheat tortilla creating their own breakfast burritos? Or why are they practically tackling each other to get the last bites of cantaloupe or honeydew melon at the fruit and salad bar? Meal time at Camp Cosby 2.0 belies what anyone considers typical summer camp fare. Fresh fruits and vegetables, a wide-array of healthy options, and a sense of culinary exploration, are all on display, thanks to Camp Cosby’s guru of food, Chef Michael Morriss. 12 |

A native of Sylacauga, Morriss is a graduate of the California Culinary Institute and spent over a decade working in a variety of restaurants before landing at the University of California San Diego. It was at UCSD that Morriss found his calling: preparing fresh, healthy meals for large, diverse groups of people. During those six years Morriss prepared meals for such various audiences as college students, kids attending sports camps, diet camp attendees and even the San Diego Chargers football team, who did their preseason training at UC San-Diego. Chef Michael, as he is known at Camp, moved back to Alabama in 2006 and took over Cosby’s kitchen two years later. Early in his tenure Morriss set out to transform the food culture at Camp Cosby, emphasizing fresh over frozen and variety over uniformity. When he arrived, Morriss said that the

kitchen’s meals were approximately 70 percent prefab meals to 30 percent fresh. Now, he says that it’s the exact opposite: approximately 70 percent fresh and pushing for more. “During lunch, for example, we do a full salad bar. We put out chicken salad, tuna salad, pasta salad, things like that. We always try to have some healthy options,” said Morris. “We even have a vegetarian option at every meal, too. You’d be surprised at how many young people want to be vegetarians.” “We typically offer six to eight items on the salad bar alone. We’ll have broccoli quiche or mushroom quiche and I make all those fresh,” he added. Chef has an easy-going attitude and sense of fun and adventure at mealtime; he gives the kids a chance to take different ingredients and create their own edible masterpieces and he introduces foods from other cultures.

“Most Fridays I’ll do an Asian themed lunch, such as Teryaki chicken with sticky white rice, vegetarian spring rolls and stir-fried vegetables and we always give fortune cookies. The kids have really gotten into it and embraced it,” said Morris.



Cosby camper Tess Melton enjoys a salsa breakfast burrito.

We always try to have some healthy options. Chef Michael Morriss

Back to the scene at breakfast, Tess Melton, an 11year-old camper from Atlanta is busy building her own burrito with salsa, refried beans and shredded cheese. From her standpoint, the food at Camp Cosby has been a real treat. “It’s been pretty healthy and good. I really like how it is so different but it all works together and it tastes really great,” she said.

Chef Michael Morriss inspects the cold starage bin.

July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 13




Multiple Branches The YMCA has been teaching people to swim for over 100 years, providing individuals the opportunity to enjoy the water in a safe and fun environment. Kids need year-round swim lessons to progress. Classes are offered mornings, afternoons, evenings, after work and Saturdays for all age groups. Please contact your local YMCA for times and availability. Cost $56 YMCA Members | $92 Non-Members Session Dates July 11-21 | July 25-Aug 4 | Aug 8-18

Saturday Swimming Lessons

Greystone & Pelham July 16,23,30, & Aug 6 Aug 13, 20, 27, & Sept 3 CONTACT your local YMCA for more information or go on line to


Multiple Branches Ages 3 and Up The Birmingham YMCA offers private lessons for ages 3 up to adult skill levels. These 30 minute lessons are customized to meet the individual needs of every swimmer. Anyone wanting to further

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advance their own or their child’s swimming will benefit from private lessons. Member $92 Non-Member $120 Semi Private Fees are $72 per child for members and $98 per child for non-members.


Greystone, Shades Valley, Shelby County, and Trussville Day Camp Swim Lessons are a great way to get your swim lessons in without having to make a special trip back to the YMCA after a long day at work. Contact your local YMCA for more information. COST $56 YMCA Members | $92 Non-Members

Saturday Swimming Lessons

Downtown July 9 – 30 | August 6 - 27 Saturday Class times: Adult: 8:30-9 & 9-9:30 a.m. Pre-School: 9:30-10 & 10-10:30 a.m. Youth: 10:30-11 a.m. COST $28 YMCA Members | $46 Non-Members CONTACT Adam West at 324-4563 or

CIRCUIT Greystone

Splash Camp A half day water camp specializing in water fun with a structured swim lesson time each day. We offer water games, relay races and open swim time to enjoy the hot summer days. Date: June 27-July 1 & July 11-15 Times 1-5p.m. Cost $125 YMCA Members | $135 Non-Members CONTACT Susan Becker at 981-0144 or

Masters Swim Program


Parent/Child Ages 6 months – 3years Tuesdays and Thursdays for 4 weeks, twice a week for a total of 8 classes. 4:30 p.m. | 30-minute classes

Pre-School Ages 3-6 Tuesdays and Thursdays for 4 weeks twice a week for a total of 8 classes. 4:30, 5:30, & 6:30 p.m. | 50-minute classes

Youth Ages 6–12 Tuesdays and Thursdays for 4 weeks, twice a week for a total of 8 classes. 4:30, 5:30, & 6:30 p.m. | 50 minute classes June 7-30 | August 2-25 COST $56 YMCA Members | $92 Non-Members


Parent/Child Ages 6 months-3 years Sessions Dates June 6-17 | June 20-July 1 | July 4-15 | July 18-29 Times: 5-5:30 p.m.


Pre-School Ages 3-5 Youth/Adult Classes Ages 6 & up Parent/Child Classes Ages 6-36 months Group Class Sessions Available (not every class is available for each session) Classes are Monday-Thursday | 40 minute classses June 6-16 | June 20-30 | July 11-14 | July 18-28 8:30-9:10 a.m. | all ages 5:45-6:25 p.m. | Preschool & Parent/Child 6:30-7:10 p.m. | Youth/Adult

Designed for the athlete in training to the casual lap swimmer. Enjoy time with your peers and receive coaching and workouts with certified swim coaches. Monthly program Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays | 5-6:30 a.m. Members only $25 per month CONTACT Susan Becker at 981-0144 or Pelham

Splash Party Friday Friday July 8 | Grades K-6 Pool games water safety and pizza! Cost $7 per child CONTACT Jennifer Dick at 685-6512 or

SBY Swim Birmingham: YMCA SWIM TEAM

(Shelby County, Greystone, Trussville, Shades Valley, and Vestavia) Year round swim team will kick off August 15, 2011 with each branch having practices at various times and days. Please make sure to contact the Aquatic Director at your local YMCA for practice times and days.

Magic City Masters Swim Class

Mountain Brook This class is for anyone who wants to improve their swimming abilities. Our goals are to have fun, improve our swimming technique, learn new skills, get faster, and meet people who are like minded. Who can be a Masters Swimmer? ANYONE. Masters Swimming is open to anyone 19 years of age or older who knows how to swim. Our club is made up of all types of swimmers, from former college athletes, to rising and experienced tri-athletes, to recreational swimmers, to folks just wanting to stay in shape and do something that will not pound their body. July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 15

CIRCUIT Our coaches are John Hanna & Sherry Colgin. Workouts typically include swim sets, kick sets, pull sets and drills to improve technique. There are multiple workouts available at each practice so that any and all levels of skill can be met. Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays beginning | 5:30-6:30 a.m. Cost $25 per month, $60 per quarter YMCA Members $38 per month, $100 per quarter Non-Members CONTACT Laysea Newsome at 870-0144 or

Outdoor Birthday Splash Parties

Multiple Branches Looking for an easy and fun way to celebrate your child’s birthday? Half of the YMCA pool during regular business hours or after hours and a lifeguard and/ or Building Supervisor will be provided for water games and recreational time. A picnic area or a room will be provided for opening gifts, playing games and enjoying cake and snacks. (please no glass containers) Partiers get one hour of recreational swimming (swimming is done first) and one hour at the picnic area or in the room. An agreement must be signed and a deposit collected when making a reservation. Please call your local YMCA for more information and to reserve a date. Parties are offered on a first come, first serve basis and each branch has a different party schedule and pricing.

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Mountain Brook & Downtown Being a lifeguard can be a very challenging and rewarding job. This class will certify participants in the new American Red Cross Lifeguard Course, CPR for the Professional Rescuer, First Aid as well as AED. Participants must attend all classes as well as pass a final written and water test. Class Prerequisites All participants must be 15 years old or older before the final exam, be able to swim 300 yards continuously (using freestyle and breast stroke) and recover a 10-pound brick from the bottom of the pool. Upcoming Class Dates June 15-19 July 13-1 July 27-31 Aug 17-21 Class Days: Wednesday - Friday: 4:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Saturday- Sunday: 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Cost $220 ($75 due at registration) | $100 for recertification sessions NOTE: If you want to be a lifeguard, but you aren’t ready to pass the prerequisites, there are practice sessions available. Contact Aquatics Director for details.


Tennis MOUNTAIN BROOK YOUTH PROGRAMS QuickStart July Sessions: July 5-7, July 12-14, July 26-28 Ages 4-6 | Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday | 3:30-4:30 p.m. Students learn to hit forehands, backhands, and volleys on the 36’ court with red low compression balls. Emphasis is on developing comprehensive athletic skills and building foundational tennis skills in a fun environment. COST $45 per weekly session Ages 8 & Under | Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 3:30-4:30 p.m. Students learn to serve, rally, and keep score on the 36’ court with red low compression balls. The focus is on racquet skills, athletic development, and tennis specific movement. COST $45 per weekly session

Alabaster Family Branch 117 Plaza Circle Alabaster, AL 35007 205.663.7240 Branch Hours Monday-Thursday: 5 a.m.- 10 p.m. Friday: 5 a.m.- 7 p.m. Saturday: 7 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday: 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR


Carol Hamilton

Alabaster Childcare Branch 1303 7th Street SW Alabaster, AL 35007 205.663.6504 Branch Hours Monday-Friday: 1 - 6 p.m. September-May 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. June-August

Ages 10 & Under | Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 4:30-5:30 p.m. Students learn to serve, rally, and keep score on the 60’ court with orange low-compression balls. The focus is on racquet skills, athletic development, and tennis specific movement with advanced stroke production and tactical awareness. COST $45 per weekly session


Performance 101


Gwen Hatcher

YMCA Camp Cosby 2290 Paul Bear Bryant Road Alpine, AL 35014 256.268.2007

Ages 11-18 July Sessions: July 5-7, July 12-14, July 26-28 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 5:30-6:30 p.m. Students are learning to play in competitive game situations and utilize basic tactics. Focus is on developing topspin groundstrokes, introducing slice, and refining continental grip skills for net play and serves. COST $45 per weekly session

Kevin Casey

Performance Tournament

Andrew Freeman

Ages 11-18 July Sessions: July 5-7, July 12-14, July 26-28 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 1:00-3:30 p.m. This group is for 11-18 year olds. Students are learning to increase ball control in areas of spin, direction, depth and speed. There is increased focus on competitive game situations and the use of more advanced tactics. COST $75 per weekly session

USTA Combo League Play July through September Check with us for league and team availability. CONTACT Jenny Robb at 870-3930 or

Downtown Branch 2101 4th Avenue North Birmingham, AL 35203 205.324.4563 Branch Hours Monday-Friday: 5 a.m.- 8 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Sunday: Closed EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR MEMBERSHIP DIRECTOR

Shelly Mitchell

Greystone Family Branch 5414 Highway 280 Birmingham, AL 35242 205.981.0144 Branch Hours Monday-Thursday: 5 a.m.- 9:30 p.m. Friday: 5 a.m.- 9 p.m. Saturday: 7 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Childwatch Hours Monday-Thursday: 8 a.m.- 8 p.m. Friday: 8 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday: 2-6 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR


Kristin Harris July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 17


Group Exercise NEW ZUMBA CLASSES AT THE YMCA Western Area Tuesdays at 6 p.m. | Instructor: Ivan Thursdays at 6 p.m. | Instructor: Choice Northeast Wednesdays at 6 p.m. | Instructor: Ivan Thursdays at 6 p.m. | Instructor: Rod Mountain Brook Wednesdays at 5:40 a.m. & 9:30 a.m. Greystone Wednesdays at 10 a.m. | Zumba for Family | Kids ages 7 & up welcome with parent


Vestavia, Greystone, Mountain Brook & Pelham COST $150 for Members| $200 for Non-Members Party is one hour. Includes use of party room, soft play room (if age appropriate), a party helper to set up and clean up after party, and a certified Zumba instructor. Times available may vary by branch. For more information on Zumba parties contact your neighborhood branch. GREYSTONE Renae McCullough 981-0144 or MOUNTAIN BROOK Mary Casciaro at 870-0144 or PELHAM Robin Boatman at 664-9622 or rboatman@ SHADES VALLEY Mickal Thomas at 870-9622 or VESTVIA India Gold at 823-0144 or


Greystone Tuesdays at 11 a.m. CONTACT Renae McCullough at 981-0144 or Pelham Wednesdays at 11:30 a.m. CONTACT Robin Boatman at 664-9622 or rboatman@

New classes this summer

Kickboxing Bootcamp, Power Yoga in the early a.m. & lunch cycle! CONTACT India Gold at 823-0144 or


YCross: Playground RULES at Greystone Get the whole family moving with this GREAT program! Playground RULES is a 50 min. class that will meet twice a week designed with activities and exercises for a parent/child team. This boot-camp style class will focus on gross motor skills using one’s own body weight, small equipment and LOTS of fitness toys! Suggested age 5-11 years. Classes offered Tuesdays & Thursdays at 9:30 a.m. in the gymnasium (Additional class times may be offered) Registration is required. COST: $125 YMCA Members | $150 Non-Members (8 sessions for 1 parent and 1 child) Additional sibling $5 per class CONTACT 981-0144



Water Aerobics Beat the summer heat with extra water aerobics classes Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays | 5:45pm YCross Thursdays at 5:45 a.m. & at 5:45 p.m. | Fridays at 9:30 a.m. Zumba Wednesdays and Fridays at 4 p.m. Cycle Now on Sundays at 2 p.m.

Mondays at 6:15 p.m. Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. Wednesdays at 5:30 a.m. Thursdays at 8:30 a.m. ***Please remember bikes are first come, first serve – get a “ticket to ride” at the front desk 30 minutes prior to class!

Summer Group Exercise Class News

18 |

New Spinning Classes at Alabaster

New Pilates Class Added Fridays at 8:45 a.m. CONTACT Carol Hamilton at 663-7240 or


Cool The Pool Noon | Outdoor Pool HOW COOL CAN YOU MAKE THE POOL? COST $5 bucket for a bucket of ice All proceeds benefit Strong Kids & Communities Programs CONTACT Rhonda Elmore at or 664.9622 or Jennifer Dick at jdick@ymcabham.or or 664.9622. July 23-24 | Greystone

Yoga Mala: Yoga Training and Enthusiast Workshop (open to all; not just instructors!) Saturday 9 a.m.-5:45 p.m. & Sunday 10 a.m.-6 p.m. The Centre for Advanced Yoga Studies, LLC and YOGASTEPSTM is pleased to announce: Yoga Mala, a funfilled weekend featuring a variety of Yogic Experiences. From Asana to Pranayama, from Yoga Therapeutics, Insomnia, Philosophy, Traditions and to Yoga Nidra, you will find many items to interest you. Several current, popular styles will be featured. The segments will be led by GINGER, Yogi Greg along with some Birmingham Area Yoga Favorites. The workshop is Open to All appealing to the general enthusiast as well as offering ideas and insights to experienced teachers. Choose those topics most interesting to you as you expand your knowledge, experience and enjoyment. There will be AFAA CEUs for some segments and Yoga Alliance CEUs. COST Early Bird Registration (ends July 18) | $155 YMCA Members | $169 Non-Members After July 18 $169 YMCA Members | $1858 Non-Members To Register call (800-269-0802) e-mail:, or go online to July 28 | Shades Valley

Basics of a Healthy Lifestyle: Ways to Improve your Diet & your Health 6 p.m. With Rachel Bieber, Personal Trainer and Nutrition & Wellness Coach, join this discussion on topics of what constitutes a diet of clean eating, including foods to eat & foods to avoid. Rachel will also discuss simple changes you can make to improve your diet and your behaviors that can make a big difference in your overall health and wellness. Rachel Bieber is a Personal Trainer and a Nutrition & Wellness Coach. Rachel offers personal training and nutrition & wellness counseling and teaches the YMCA Active Weight Loss at the Shades Valley Family Branch. Contact Rachel Bieber at 870-9622 or August 21 | Trussville

TRX Suspension Training: BASIC Instructor Education Early Bird Registration $175 Early Bird Registration ends Thursday, June 16 at 6 p.m. Contact Felicia Stewart at

Directory Hargis Retreat 928 Hargis Drive Chelsea. AL 35043 205.678.6512 Branch Hours Monday-Saturday: 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. PROGRAM EXECUTIVE

Kim Sharp

Mountain Brook Branch 2401 20th Place South Birmingham, AL 35223 256.870.0144 Branch Hours Monday-Thursday: 5 a.m.- 9 p.m. Friday: 5 a.m.- 8 p.m. Saturday: 7 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: 8 a.m.-7 p.m. Childwatch Hours Monday-Thursday: 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday: 8 a.m.- 6:30 p.m. Saturday: 8:15 a.m.- Noon Sunday: 2-6 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR


Kristi Nix

Northeast Family Branch 628 Red Lane Road Birmingham, AL 35216 205.833.7616 Branch Hours Monday & Tuesday: 5 a.m.- 9 p.m. Wednesday-Friday: 5 a.m.- 8 p.m. Saturday: 7 a.m.- Noon Sunday: Closed EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Terri A. Harvill

Pelham Family Branch 2610 Pelham Parkway Pelham, AL 35124 205.664.9622 Branch Hours Monday-Friday: 5 a.m.- 9 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: 1 a.m.- 6 p.m. Childwatch Hours (School Year) Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 3:30 -7:45 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- Noon (Summer) Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.-7:45 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- Noon EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR


Cindy Reams July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 19


Childcare Parents Night Out

MOUNTAIN BROOK Friday, July 29 | 6-9:30 p.m. Pizza! Movie! Games! Registration Deadline: Noon, July 29 Cost $15 First Child | $10 Each Additional Child CONTACT Playroom at 445-2840 VESTAVIA July 15 & 29 | August 12 & 26 Time: 6-9:30 p.m. Cost $15 First child | $10.00 each additional child in family Reservations required. Call Amber Crosby at 823-0144 or


Drop & Go Available during regular playroom hours for ages 10 months – 7 years Bring healthy snacks or lunch and diaper bag/change of clothes Time 2-4 hours Cost $10 first child | $7 each additional child YMCA Members $15 first child | $12 each additional child Non-Members CONTACT Playroom at 445-2840

Summer Fun Supervised Child Care Monday – Saturday from 8:30-11:30 a.m. Ages 7-13 Children must be signed in by parent to either the Gym or Youthroom Youthroom includes Wii, games & crafts and Gym has interactive ball games CONTACT Playroom at 445-2840


Kids in Motion Ages 5-13 Exercise and Nutrition Class for Children Tuesdays and Thursdays | 5:30-6:30 p.m. No registration required! Cost Free YMCA Members | $5 Per Class Non-Members CONTACT Beth Weiss at 823-0144 or


Free estate planning program offered to YMCA members, friends Working with national consulting firm, Thompson & Associates, the YMCA offers this free, professional, values-based approach to Estate Planning. Through thoughtful preparation, you can increase the benefit that your estate provides to your family and charities while reducing taxes.

Because of the relationship with the YMCA, here are several reasons to utilize the Thompson & Associates planning process: • • • • • •

No charge Confidentiality – the YMCA will not receive any of the information that you discuss You will be working with an unbiased third party Personalized – thoughtful, values-based process focuses on your objectives No time limit – you work with Thompson & Associates at your own pace No competition with existing advisors (Thompson & Associates doesn’t draft documents or sell products)

Contact Leigh Collins at 801-6053 or to set up a meeting to discuss a specific estate planning issue, have your current plan reviewed, or create a new plan. And thank you for your relationship with the YMCA of Birmingham. 20 |




Shades Valley Family Branch 3551 Montgomery Highway Birmingham, AL 35209 205.870.9622 Branch Hours Monday-Friday: 5 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: 1- 6 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR


Dawn Pilliteri

Mountain Brook

Trussville Family Branch

YMCA EatFit Summer Camp is for young people at risk for, or who have been diagnosed with, pre-diabetes or diabetes. (Diagnostic testing company Atherotech provides financial support.)

5920 Valley Road Trussville, AL 35173 256.655.2224 Branch Hours Monday-Friday: 5 a.m.- 9 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: Noon -7 p.m. Childwatch Hours Monday-Friday: 8 a.m.- 7 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- 1 p.m. Sunday: 1-5 p.m.

I am learning “how to be healthy and how to have fun while I’m doing it. And, I have Nakayia with me; it’s fun being with someone who understands what I’m going through.” — Tori Samples, 11 ”Because diabetes and heart disease run in our family, we decided to go ahead and do something to help Tori. She has learned about exercise, and about the proper way to exercise. She applies the lessons at home. ”

“I like to jump rope, because I like to jump and I can have a rope with it.” — Nikayia Johns, 11 ”We like the program. I even do a little cardio workout while Nikayia works out. She measures out her foods now, and we’ve cut back on the sodas.” —Nikayia’s Mother



Wendy Newland

Vestavia Branch 2086 Columbiana Road Vestavia Hills, AL 35216 205.823.0144 Branch Hours Monday-Thursday: 5:15 a.m.- 9 p.m. Friday: 5:15 a.m.- 8 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. Sunday: 1-5 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

— Tori’s Mother


Best buds, Tori Samples and Nikayla Johns.

Clay Coleman

Western Area Family Branch 1195 Bessemer Road Birmingham, AL 35228 205.923.1195 Branch Hours Monday-Thursday: 6 a.m.- 8:30 p.m. Friday: 6 a.m.- 8 p.m. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Terri A. Harvill

Birmingham YMCA Youth Center 2400 7th Avenue North Birmingham, AL 35203 205.324.1643 Branch Hours 7 a.m.- 6 p.m. PROGRAM EXECUTIVE

Anthony Sparks July-August 2011 | YLife Birmingham | 21

Y Life Birmingham - July-August 2011  

The first completley digital issue Y Life Birmingham, the lifestyle magazine for the members and friends of the YMCA of Birmingham.

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