Free Fitness & Fun

Back starting September 7, 2021! The Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA offers the 7th Grade Initiative Program, a free membership for 7th Graders who reside in Clark, Scotch Plains and Fanwood. Plus, read on for information on our bonus for 8th Graders who were not able to participate in the program last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Program Goals

  • Promote YMCA Character Values: Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility
  • Increase physical and mental wellness, while having fun
  • Develop and support healthy exercise and eating habits
  • Establish a sense of belonging in each teen
  • Provide a safe and secure atmosphere

Form Healthy Habits Early On

Seventh grade is a pivotal and transitional time for many teens, a point when they are given freedom to choose how they spend their out-of-school hours. The Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA wants to support and encourage kids to make good decisions and form habits that lead to an overall healthy lifestyle. The 7th Grade Initiative program provides opportunities for fitness and life skills training, as well as an opportunity to socialize with peers in a safe, supervised and conveniently located environment.

This program runs from September 7, 2021-June 30, 2022. Activities include:

  • Free programming included with membership: open gym, open swim, teen fitness programs, pop-up classes and games throughout the year.
  • Teen Wellness Program – view our Wellness Center page for more information
  • Fee-based Programming available at full member rates:
    • Fee-based Youth Sports Programs such as Middle School Track and Tae Kwon Do
    • Middle School Night Out – free in October only
    • Private Music Lessons
    • Basketball
    • Aquatics– swim lessons and Piranha Prep
    • Gymnastics

This free membership demonstrates our commitment to the healthy development of the whole person. Free 7th Grade membership is largely supported through donations to our Annual Support Campaign.

It’s easy to get started.

Bring the following to the YMCA Welcome Center to activate your membership:

1. Your school ID, roster or report card

2. A parent/guardian*

3. Sign a code of conduct

4. Complete a few quick forms and begin your membership!

Questions? Please call us at 908-889-8880.

*Both parent/guardian and 7th grader must be present to activate membership


We know you were unable to participate in our 7th grade membership program last year. We’re offering 8th graders in our service area a free Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA membership for the month of September 2021, followed by 50% off their membership in October 2021. If you decide you want to continue your membership with the Y, you will be charged the full Teen Membership rate from November 2021 on. This way, you get to try our Y and see if membership is right for you. We have a feeling it is!