NEW BUFFALO — A seven-station oasis of senior exercise equipment was installed at New Buffalo Township’s Memorial Park on Thursday, June 27.
“The equipment is designed to be accessible to seniors of all levels. It works every muscle group, and not only is it good for physical exercise, it’s also good for socialization,” said Rotary Club of Harbor Country President David Stevenson.
He added that the $47,000 project was spearheaded by the Rotary Club and involved many foundations and the township.
Chad Butler of Lakeshore Construction and a crew including Ryan Butler, Matt Helms and volunteers from the Rotary Club and township installed the equipment on June 27, with each station bolted down onto a concrete pad with half-inch anchors.
Butler said the Greenfields Fitness resistance training equipment is heavy and should be very durable (all bearings are sealed).
Examples of the stations (many of which can accommodate more than one person) include: a 4-person leg press station; a 2-person back and arms combo station; a 2-person combo lat pull-down and vertical press station; a 2-person pendulum abs and dip station; a 3-person static combo station (includes spaces for pull-ups and sit-ups); a rowing machine; and a 2-person chest press station.
And you don’t need to be a senior citizen to use them. Any adult is welcome to exercise in the park.
The machines do bear the following warning: “No children under age 14 allowed without adult supervision.”
The exercise station area is located next to the main, covered pavilion in New Buffalo Township’s Memorial Park (which includes rest rooms). There also are scenic hiking trails, a splash pad, a playground and a basketball court.
On exercise equipment installation day the park was filled with people participating in a family reunion.
Stevenson called the shaded portion of the park where the exercise pad is located “a delightful place to exercise.”
Township Parks Director Patrick Donnelly said he looks forward to seeing the equipment get a lot of use.
“Hopefully this gives families another reason to come out here ... adults can work out while the kids run and play,” he said.
Stevenson said the equipment can be used up to 10 months a year “when there’s not snow” and is essentially maintenance free, adding that benches were slated to be installed about a week after the equipment was put in place.
He said an official dedication ceremony will take place in the near future.
The plaque that will be installed at the exercise facility reads: “New Buffalo Township would like to thank these generous sponsors for their generous donations ... The Rotary Club of Harbor Country; The Pokagon Fund; Frederick S. Upton Foundation; Larry Bubb Endowment; Berrien Community Foundation; William J. Deputy Foundation; Jackie’s Cafe (Chef Jackie Shen spearheaded a Fudge-raiser for the project); Nora Duffy; Spectrum Health Lakeland; and the Ozinga Foundation.