MACC merges with Greater Susquehanna YMCA

Jan. 24—BEAVER SPRINGS — The Greater Susquehanna Valley YMCA and Middlecreek Area Community Center (MACC) in Beaver Springs are merging.

Leaders from both organizations announced Tuesday that the MACC will become the fourth branch of the Greater Susquehanna Valley YMCA which operates locations in Sunbury, Milton and Lewisburg as well as a program site in Coal Township.

"They'll keep doing what they're doing and we'll add to it," said YMCA CEO Director Bonnie McDowell of the 67 Elm St., Beaver Springs, recreational center.

The MACC opened in the western part of Snyder County in 2001 and celebrated its 20th anniversary by paying off the center's $900,000 mortgage.

The 30 MACC employees will be retrained as they become a part of the YMCA organization.

"We're excited to see where this will take us," MACC Executive Director Brittany Coder said of the merger that will help enhance community events, fitness opportunities, the food bank and other programs with better access to funding and grants.

"They have done great on their own. The community really supports them and they have a great donor base, but the (MACC) board was looking toward the future and decided it's better to be part of a larger, national organization," McDowell said.

The local YMCA was founded in Milton in 1889, 45 years after the establishment of the organization in London.

McDowell said the merger will happen within the year. "The board has voted to make it happen, but there are legal channels to go through and we have to transition all of our systems," she said.

Talk of a merger began five years ago among community leaders from western Snyder County and YMCA board members who formed a task force to explore the feasibility of the proposed venture.

A community-needs assessment in the Middlecreek area of Snyder County found that a merger "was the best course of action to allow both organizations to effectively serve the residents of Snyder County," a statement on the merger said.

"The MACC Board of Directors fully supports this merger with the YMCA and is very excited to see it come to fruition," said MACC Board President Melanie Rager. "The merger will be beneficial in so many ways to the organization and to the community, and more resources will be offered to the employees and people in the community. The YMCA is a wonderful organization that has so much to offer. I feel that the merger will only strengthen the MACC and the surrounding communities. For the board, it's about the community. We want to be able to continue to provide programs, resources and stability to our surrounding neighbors. We have the community's best interests at heart."

Terri Locke, Greater Susquehanna Valley YMCA board president, said the partnership will allow the organization to reach more people.

"GSV Y's strategic plan includes expanding their reach to better serve more communities. This merger falls directly in line with that plan, and those goals will provide a vision into the future," Locke said. "The journey ahead will be filled with collaboration innovation, and a shared commitment to making the community an even better place for all."

Snyder County Commissioner Joe Kantz touted the merger as "anything that helps the MACC continue to do its programming is good."