I have been to the JCC about 3 times as a guest so far, but I am 99% certain that I will be getting a membership. The cost for a year's membership is much lower than at other local/chain gyms. I wanted to join a club that has a pool for lap swimming as well as group classes. I also might need childcare on the occasion when my husband is working. The JCC offers it all.
I took my children with me for the first time a few days ago and my friend and I walked around the track pushing our strollers. Then we let the kids play for a while in the playground which has varying levels of development. Then we went inside so that I could check out the babysititng room.
I have never left my children with anyone other than my family. Most of the time they were with my husband, but a handful of times it was with my mom or my sister and even then it was never more than a couple hours and many times they are sleeping. So you can understand my apprehension of leaving them with strangers. Well, after spending only a few minutes in there, I was put at ease. They both took of running like kids in a toy store. ("mommy who?") Although I didn't leave the room (they were short staffed), I know they wouldn't have even noticed I was gone. My 1 year old son who tends to be a little clingy didn't even call for me once.
I am excited about joining this club and hope it lives up to it's great first impressions!
FYI, I am not Jewish and it is not a requirement to attend or become a member or this facility.