Back in business: Health club owners intent on doing the right thing

Phil Castle, The Business Times

Dale Reece says he’s long relied on an underlying philosophy to guide his business decisions. It’s been no different in reopening his Grand Junction health clubs in the midst of a pandemic.

“We always try to do the right thing,” says Reece, who owns Crossroads Fitness Centers with his wife, Paula.

Following state and county guidelines, Crossroads limits the number of members who use facilities to 30 percent of capacity. Members are checked for fevers when they come in. They must wear face coverings and maintain distancing at all times. Employees wear face covers as well.

The Reeces waived dues in April when Crossroads was closed and extended the waiver through May, knowing some members might remain reluctant to come back right away. “We want them to make the decisions for themselves in their time frame,” Dale says.

That’s a reflection of another underlying philosophy to cater to members and their needs, he says. “We see a member first and their experience, and the money second.”

The Reeces say the reacted at first to the coronavirus pandemic and related stay-at-home orders and closures with shock and disbelief. A state order closed gyms along with bars, theaters and other types of businesses to slow the spread of the virus.

The order closed the Crossroads Fitness north location on Compass Drive and downtown location in the Alpine Bank Building.

The Reeces reopened the north location on May 6, although the downtown location remains closed. Members who used the downtown facility are welcomed to use the north location.

Areas of the north location also remain closed under state and county guidelines, including locker rooms and showers as well as the childcare, cycling and pool areas. No group classes are offered.

Dale says one good thing to come out of the closure was an opportunity to renovate some of the facilities at the north location, including the cardiovascular exercise room, Mind Body Studio and women’s locker room. “It was a really good long-term solution.”

While the experience of closing their businesses and the process of reopening the operation has been a difficult one, the Reeces say they’ve been encouraged by employees, members and local government agencies and business organizations. “There have been so many acts of kindness,” Dale says.

The ordeal has reinforced yet another underlying principle, Paula says, and that’s connectivity. “We’re not an island anymore. We’re all in this together.”

For more information about Crossroads Fitness Centers, call 242-8746 or visit the website located
at www.crossroadsfitness.com.