Attention women of Bath Township: want a good way to release endorphins, burn some calories, make memories and have some fun? Come play basketball at Bath Middle School.
Eight women have been playing for free every Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. for the past four weeks at an open gym. Skill or experience is not a requirement. The only requirements are that you must be a female 25 years or older, 75 percent of participants must be residents and no spectators are allowed.
The final session was supposed to be March 26, but Director of Bath Township Parks and Recreation Becky Goodwin said she wants to see this continue to grow. Now the program will continue through May.
“The men have done an open gym for the past few years and it really took off,” Goodwin said. “Some of the women in the community wanted to do the same thing. Once the program ends in May, we will pick back up in January of 2018.”
Goodwin said that Bath Middle School allows the women to play in their gym at no cost under a few conditions.
“No one else besides the women participating in basketball are allowed to be in the gym,” Goodwin said. “No children, no husbands, no one. The school needs to know who is going in and out of their school, and they need to have that expectation for everyone. Also, if there is a school event going on that day, that takes priority.”
Carolyn Hoard, an active participant and Bath Township resident, said that playing basketball has given her the opportunity to grow closer with the other residents.
“I love it,” Hoard said. “I really do. A lot of people say it’s hard to find time to exercise and get out there when we have so much going on in our lives. Playing this sport with my friends and neighbors… It makes it way easier to get out there and get some exercise. It’s fun, but tiring. Definitely tiring.”
Susan Kubicek, the coordinator for all women’s basketball open gyms, said that playing with people in the community has “been a blast” and that she’s looking forward to getting more women to enjoy the sport.
“Because we usually get eight girls to come out, we play four on four. Sometimes three on four or even three on three if we want to play with a sub,” Kubicek said. “It would nice to be able to have 10, that way we could play five on five.”
“If there are any ladies 25 or older that want to play, we would love to see some more people come out,” Kubicek said, smiling.