SOUTHINGTON - The Southington Chamber of Commerce celebrated Planet Fitnessâ€™ rebranded and remodeled gym on Queen Street Wednesday during their grand opening.
Chamber officials and local radio station 95.7 came out in support of the ribbon cutting event, which was catered by Jerryâ€™s Pizza. The remodeling began in June. In mid-July, the building at 342 Queen St., a former Cardio Express, was reopened as one of 33 Connecticut locations under the chain, which has nearly 2,000 locations worldwide. As a promotion that day, people were able to sign-up for the gym for an initial payment of 25 cents.
Mike Shapiro, vice president of operations with Planet Fitness, said the gym has since become a Chamber member and intends to strive to be part of the local community.
â€śWe want to have that small town feel,â€ť said Shapiro. â€śEvery town is different from one another and we want to be part of every fair, festival and local event.â€ť
One example of the community partnerships Planet Fitness is seeking to establish is with local sign-maker, Sign Pro, Inc. The company created the new signage for the gym.
Shapiro said the signage is intended to convey a message of a â€śjudgment free zone.â€ť It includes phrases such as â€śyou belongâ€ť and â€śleave egos hereâ€ť placed by the doorway.
The remodeling brought in new equipment and changed the layout to make it easier for people of different fitness levels. All equipment is on the same floor.
â€śThe reception has been 100 percent positive to the change,â€ť he said.
Shapiro said Planet Fitness is â€śthe only company in the industry that welcomes everyone no matter your fitness level.â€ť
Shapiro added that access to a personal trainer is included with membership. The focus, he said, isnâ€™t so much bodybuilding as workouts to improve peopleâ€™s health from day to day.
Barbara Hekeler, executive director of the Southington Chamber of Commerce, said it is â€śwonderfulâ€ť for a large chain like Planet Fitness to be interested in becoming a community partner.
â€śWe have quite a few of the bigger chains as Chamber members,â€ť she said. â€śItâ€™s great whenever a business wants to locate here and take an active role in the community.â€ť
For more information on Planet Fitness, call 860-736-0010 or visit planetfitness.com/gyms/southington-ct.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.