Story and Photos courtesy of
Leeds Grenville Economic Development Office
WESTPORT – What started as a friendly gesture to share workout space amongst friends in Athens has now led to another self-serve gym in Westport.
The company 247 Fitness, a gym where members have all-hours access, has just opened in the new Harvest Creek plaza in March. The opening follows on the heels of the successful 247 location in Athens just two years ago. Membership in Westport has already hit 100 and a third Leeds Grenville location is being considered in Merrickville.
“It was a perfect storm,” says company founder B.J. Ward, an Athens resident with a 25-year fitness and gym equipment sales and services background. B.J. says his new multi-location business practically founded itself.
“I was originally looking for some equipment storage space in Athens,” he says. B.J. envisioned a small workout area for himself and perhaps a few friends in the storefront of the building. He suggested it on his Facebook page and was blown away by the immediate response.
“I asked my wife, what just happened?” recalls B.J. of how more than 70 people responded the first day. The gym now has 200 members. As an Athens native, B.J. was also happy to fill a storefront and improve the village’s Main Street.
The gyms are fully equipped with strength and cardio machines as well as free weights. There is free WiFi and TV, including the Sports Channel. Members gain access with key fobs 365 days a year. Each location has a bathroom and round-the-clock security cameras and emergency phones.
You are invited to bring your own trainer or certified trainers are welcome to bring their clients. Memberships can be purchased monthly, seasonally (4 months) or annually.
Learn more about 247 Fitness by visiting the website, Facebook page or on Twitter.
You can send them an email.