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The Virginian - Pilot (Norfolk, VA.)
In its first week, the new Kempsville Recreation Center attracted thousands of new members to Virginia Beach's seven facilities .
From Kempsville's opening on June 29 through July 6, 5,665 people joined city rec centers. In the same week last summer, the city sold 3,714 memberships, parks and rec spokeswoman Julie Braley said.
The department attributes most of that sales growth to Kempsville's reopening.
"People were just so excited for that center to open," Braley said. "People told us they were waiting on the center to rejoin."
Memberships can be purchased online or at any center and can be used at any of them . Adults who live in Virginia Beach can pay $98 to join. For nonresidents, it costs $374 a year.
Rates will go up in January to $104 a year for adult residents of Virginia Beach and $396 for nonresidents.
Nancy Luong had been a member, but quit because the closest center was 30 minutes away.
She rejoined when Kempsville opened because it was closer .
"It's great," she said. "You can tell it's a good place."
The city demolished the former Kempsville center in 2015. It was the city's oldest facility and hosted activities like boxing, bowling, gymnastics and theater productions. Those were replaced with more modern amenities - basketball courts, a kid-friendly pool, lazy river and space for childcare.
Luong likes the indoor play areas for the kids. She said there are businesses in the area that offer similar amenities , but are more expensive.
Another bonus? She can drop off her 3-year-old daughter at childcare while she works out.
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