Peoria, IL – The Greater Peoria Family YMCA hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, October 26th at 12:30 PM to celebrate the grand opening of their new bridge and trail system located on their 59-acre property. 

The Peoria YMCA invited all Peoria area community members to celebrate the grand opening and new era of outdoor health services for all at the YMCA. 

Paul Larson, Senior Program Director at the Peoria YMCA, led the project. “This project is the culmination of years of planning,” Larson explains. “We took advantage, starting in April of 2020, of the downtime that the pandemic provided us to really focus on the trails.

Larson stated, “This project would not be possible if it wasn’t for the help and guidance of several businesses and community members.”

The YMCA would like to thank the following contributors to this project include, the Army Corps of Engineers, Carpenters Union 237, Carver Lumber, Chris Pyles Trucking, Corsaw Lumber, Mr. Michael Friberg, J&D Farms, Mr. Jeff Kerr, Kickapoo Sand & Gravel, LaHood Construction, Local Heavy Machine Operators Union 649, PAMBA, Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, the U.S. Marines, Youth for Christ, and JIMAX.

Andy Thornton, President, and CEO of the YMCA, believes that this grand opening will create more opportunities and accessibility to the outdoors for the community.

“This is more than just a bridge that links both sides of our property,” stated Thornton. “This is a bridge to our future…It’s the key to unlocking the potential of our campus and opens our eyes to what we are capable of for the Peoria area.” 

For more information on the new bridge and trail system, please call 309-692-7631 or email You may also visit the Peoria YMCA website at for more information.