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Take a peak: GFAFB fitness center reopens rock wall

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Phyllis Jimenez
  • 319th Reconnaissance Wing Public Affairs

It’s no secret that winters in Grand Forks are snowy, windy, and frigid. Because the cold season lasts most of the year, it is important that we provide service members and their families with as many indoor activities as possible.

Recently, the list of activities available at the fitness center grew with the reopening of the 45-foot, 9-inch-tall rock-climbing wall. The wall closed April 2021after a water pipe burst, flooding the entry way of the gym and damaging to the roof and floors.

The process of repairing and reopening the wall was a long and tedious process said Senior Airman Brooklyn Asire Urrutia, a fitness center journeyman with the 319th Force Support Squadron.

“We had to get funding, make purchases and coordinate with contractors to do the repairs,” Asire Urrutia said. “We also had to schedule training and get certifications for the whole team in order to ensure we all know proper safety and operating procedures for the rock wall.”

The wall is available by appointment Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for airmen and their families.

 “Come to the gym’s front desk, sign a waiver, and make an appointment,” Asire Urrutia said. “As long as the climber is at least four years old and fits safely and securely in the harness, he or she is more than welcome to use the wall.”

This reopening takes place just as fall rolls in, bringing cooler temperatures with it.    

“It’s important to have a place to stay active when weather won’t allow,” said Airman 1st Class Akwasi Owusu Ampomah, a fitness center apprentice with the 319th FSS. “We have a great facility. I hope everyone tries out the wall; I’m sure they’ll love it.”

The fitness center features several additional indoor facilities including a track, field house, obstacle course and racquetball court. It even has an esports lounge for members who enjoy virtual gaming.

 Whether you’re pursuing current interests or wanting to try something new, there is bound to be something there for you, Asire Urrutia said.