Hampden is the latest community in Greater Bangor to host an outdoor fitness center designed to expand free access to workouts for people of all fitness levels.
Located at the Hampden VFW Whitcomb Baker Post 4633 on Canoe Club Road, it has seven exercise stations where people can use their own body weight to complete a workout in as little as seven minutes.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Bangor has had a similar outdoor fitness center in Broadway Park since July 2019. It was donated to the city by AARP. Last year, Brewer installed one in Veteran’s Park.
Hampden’s $161,000 outdoor gym, called the Fitness Court, was a collaboration with the town, the health insurer Community Health Options and the National Fitness Campaign. A similar partnership in Lewiston paid for an outdoor gym in that city installed at the same cost.
Visitors to the outdoor fitness centers download a free fitness app to their cellphones that acts as a coach and guide through the workout of an individual’s choosing. Workouts are adaptable for all fitness levels and allow participants to move at their own pace.
Amy Ryder, Hampden’s economic development director, said the town contributed a total of $107,000 to the project from its tax increment financing account. Community Health Options provided a $50,000 grant, and additional money came from donations from local business sponsors.
“Hampden is excited to welcome a Fitness Court to our community,” Ryder said. “Our residents, as well as those of surrounding towns, will greatly benefit from the free fitness opportunity.”
Community Health Options is the exclusive sponsor of the National Fitness Campaign in Maine, according to Kevin Lewis, the insurer’s president and CEO.
“These Fitness Courts are an important part of our commitment to the health and well-being of Maine people, and we believe making fitness opportunities free and accessible is vital to building healthy communities,” Lewis said.