(L to R) Bill Price, Bryan Madden, Bruce Williams

The YMCA of Columbia has been on Sumter Street downtown for almost 160 years and was one of the first 50 Ys in the United States.

Since opening in 1854, the Y’s emphasis has been on creating a community where individuals can come together in a spirit of common fellowship. Today, the YMCA of Columbia includes five branches, in Downtown Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Northeast Columbia and Orangeburg and is a partner with the Palmetto Center for Women (formerly the YWCA).

Each of the five branches offers something fun and different. The Downtown YMCA has been a cornerstone in Columbia’s community for over 150 years. The building where it is still located today was originally built as a Y in 1911 with land donated by Woodrow Wilson’s family.

The Jeep Rogers Family YMCA has an interactive play area with something for everyone from toddlers to teenagers. Deep Sea Discovery features an indoor play structure, a Lego table, youth-sized cardio equipment, a parent lounge and more.

The Orangeburg County YMCA has its own water park with big slides, a children’s pool, a lazy river and more. Groups can rent it on Tuesdays, and it’s open to the public every other day, if the weather permits.

The NorthWest Family YMCA has an active Triathlon Club. Club members train together for events around the world, and for their very own Tom Hoskins Memorial Sprint Triathlon held every July.

Lastly, the Lexington Family YMCA has a full Equestrian Program with horseback riding options for everyone from beginners to advanced riders.

The Y takes pride in being an integral part of the community by sharing human and physical resources with community members and other agencies and organizations. The Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change in the communities it serves.

“We are joined together by a shared commitment to nurture the potential of kids, promote healthy living and foster a sense of social responsibility. We believe that lasting personal and social change can only happen when we all work together to invest in our kids, health and neighbors,” says Bryan Madden, CEO of the YMCA of Columbia.

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