WARREN — The newest indoor athletic facility in Warren has reopened its doors under new management, after the business was shuttered in March amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rachel Coor has taken over the business and will build on the foundation of the Midcoast Athletics Center.
“We're just excited to be in business,” she said. “The former owner had a wonderful vision, and sadly COVID kind of put that fire out in the spring. We’re hoping to take the foundation of what he started and grow it into a sustainable place for Midcoast athletes to play.”
Coor’s is a former registered nurse, has been a practicing attorney in Arizona, and was long-time cheerleading coach (12 years at Medomak Valley High School, four years in Colorado and eight years at Rockland District High School). She is also a former employee for Major League Baseball’s Arizona Diamondbacks and former law fellow for the National Football League.
“It seems like a strange crossover, but honestly my sports law experience has been immensely helpful in undertaking this business ownership,” she said.
Brandi Collins, a Georgia native now residing in Gardiner, is the MAC’s Director of Programs and brings a history in gym management to the Warren facility. Owls Head native Richie Oliver is serving as the Director of Basketball Operations, and boasts coaching experience for basketball and baseball at Rockland District High School and Medomak Valley High School.
The MAC will offer year-round basketball, tumbling, cheerleading, and fitness training.
“Our goals are to be an accessible, affordable facility where both youth and adults in the Midcoast area can find a sport to play,” said Coor.
Hybrid Fitness, of Thomaston, will share a portion of the MAC building, while still maintaining their own separate business, to boost athlete’s development goals.
“We're exploring options for adult sports leagues, sports simulators, and programs for seniors,” said Coor. “We’ll have tanning beds, a concession stand, and merchandise for sale. We have a ton of new equipment on the way, bleachers for spectators, trampolines for tumbling, and hopefully some batting cages and pitching machines arriving before the spring season.”
The MAC is launching a membership program at $14.99 per month for individuals and $24.99 per month for families.
Members will have access to free open gym weekdays starting Tuesday, Sept. 8, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., will receive special member rates on all tuition, and will receive a discount on merchandise.
The MAC, under Coor’s leadership, held a soft opening in July and ran youth camps from the middle of July to early August for 364 youngsters offering basketball, cheerleading, tumbling, a stunt camp, a strength and agility camp, and flag football.
This fall, the MAC will offer supervised virtual learning, Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. for students in third grade through senior year at a cost of $35 daily, $60 twice per week, $85 thrice per week and $125 for a full week. (Click here for registration.)
On the days students are not attending on-campus classes, students can spend the day at the MAC as they balance academics and athletics.
“We’ll help keep them on track with their virtual school commitments and will help them stay organized with any homework packets,” explained Coor. “During the times they don't have school commitments, they'll be able to utilize our gym space. We have a structured phys ed curriculum for the mornings and basketball instruction in the afternoons, along with open gym in the back court and the cheer room will be open.”
Amid the ongoing pandemic, the MAC is following community sports guidelines established by the Maine CDC and Maine Department of Economic and Community Development.
All athletes are screened at the door, including temperature scans, and hands are to be sanitized when entering and exiting the building. All athletes bring their own, labeled water bottles, and are encouraged to keep distance when not physically playing.
The facility has a one way foot traffic system in place, where athletes enter the building in the front and exit through a side door. The MAC maintains contact information for every athlete and daily attendance sheets for contact tracing purposes, and is limiting each class to stay under the maximum 50 people allowed indoors. All equipment is sanitized between every class.
“We understand that some families are not comfortable with allowing their kids to play for private clubs,” said Coor. “We will still welcome those kids with open arms if and when they are ready. The overwhelming message we received from the community this summer was ‘thank you for giving our kids a place to play.’”