Born enslaved in 1805 in Prince George’s County Maryland, young abolitionist Anthony Bowen would go on to earn his freedom in 1830 and become a pillar of the Washington, DC African American Community. As the first African-American employee of the US Patent Office, Bowen was able to use his means to harbor freed slaves from his home in SW, Washington, DC. In 1853, he would go on to found the first African-American chapter of the YMCA.
Fast forward to Monday, September 9th and we have the opening of the new unbelievably state-of-the-art YMCA in Washington, DC; The Anthony Bowen Center.
DC Mayor Vincent Gray, various congressmen and YMCA officials in honor of the great achievement that this building represents, held a ribbon cutting ceremony and speeches. The Anthony Bowen YMCA has been built around the same goals and values that Mr. Bowen held over 150 years ago, which are achievements through community, education and well-being.
The Anthony Bowen Facility is truly amazing! With 44,000 square feet of space, housing a 6 lane indoor swimming pool, 3 exercise studios, roof top terrace, youth academy, a full kitchen setup for teaching, member gathering spaces, and last but not least a two story rock wall. This is where Vertical Rock Indoor Climbing Centers comes into play.
Vertical Rock will be lending our expertise in rock wall safety and other programs to the YMCA in order to help foster a dynamic rock climbing community inside of Washington, DC.
If you are interested in climbing with us at the new Anthony Bowen Center located in the U Street / Shaw corridor (1325 W Street, NW, Washington, DC 20009) of Washington, DC here are a few things we’ll be offering:
Scheduled open climb times for kids and adults led by the Y’s certified staff.
Learn the Ropes Climbing Classes, Instructed by VR Staff.
These courses are for ages 14 years and up, and a great way to learn the basic techniques it takes to rock climb.
After passing a climbing certification test, members can rent the room in 1- hour increments for 2-6 certified members at a time.