116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
MARION — For the fourth time in five years, Marion has been named an All-Star Community by the Iowa League of Cities.
This year’s award is being given to Marion for the Marion YMCA and Community Rec Center.
The city will be recognized as the winner in the large city category at the organization’s annual conference and exhibit planned for mid-September. Marion is one of three cities this year to receive such an award out of Iowa’s 940 cities.
The All-Star Community Awards program aims to showcase excellence in local government and provides a means for sharing Iowa’s best public service ideas.
“This award signifies statewide visibility and overall endorsement of our community’s progress in recent years,” Marion Mayor Nick AbouAssaly said.
Contest entries are divided into three population categories: less than 3,000, 3,000-9,999 and more than 10,000.
As of the 2020 Census, Marion’s population is 41,535, an increase of 19.5 percent or 6,767 people since 2010.
The judging panel, consisting of former city officials and others familiar with municipal government experience, looks for each project’s impact on the community, originality, cost-effectiveness and use of intergovernmental collaboration and innovation, according to the Iowa League of Cities website.
The new YMCA, at 3740 Irish Dr., is the product of a decadelong effort to replace the old YMCA, 3100 10th Ave.
The city contributed $7.3 million to the overall $19.5 million facility, which opened in January.
“This project is much more than a beautiful building,” AbouAssaly said at the ribbon-cutting ceremony earlier this year. “The truly spectacular part of the story is what will happen here, through the partnership between the Y and the city of Marion. Community will happen here.”
The 70,000-square-foot building features 7,000 square feet of fitness space, three full-size basketball courts, an indoor track and leisure and lap swimming pools.
Marion’s previous Community All-Star awards were for Prospect Meadows Sports Complex in 2020, the Uptown Artway in 2018 and the Klopfenstein Amphitheater for the Performing Arts in 2017.
The city will receive its newest award on Sept. 16 at the League of Cities award ceremony.
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