Freedom Aquatic and Fitness Center Named Business of the Year

Posted: June 2, 2004 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Patty Snellings

The Freedom Aquatic and Fitness Center at the Prince William Campus has been named the 2003-04 Business of the Year by the Prince William County-Greater Manassas Chamber of Commerce. The center took top honors in the category for chamber members with 16 or more employees.

Noting numerous contributions in support of chamber and community endeavors, the chamber applauded the Freedom Center for active sponsorship of chamber events; contributing to nonprofit groups and partnering with a local school to provide extracurricular activities; and offering free lectures and demonstrations on fitness, health, and wellness.

Ronald Carmichael, Freedom Center general manager, accepted the award on behalf of the center’s 250 employees. “We’re very proud of this award and grateful to the chamber for recognizing the contribution that the Freedom Center is making to the community,” he said. “Winning this award has validated the exceptional vision demonstrated by the partners when they consolidated resources to provide the residents of this area, as well as the students and faculty of George Mason University, with the best recreation, fitness, and aquatic facility in the region. This achievement has been a team effort, and I am grateful to all of our dedicated, professional team members who have made it possible.”

On the same day that the award was announced, the Freedom Center also received accolades in the “Best of Prince William,” an annual Readers Choice Awards poll sponsored by Media General Northern Virginia Community Newspapers. Readers of the Potomac News and the Manassas Journal Messenger voted the center a “best” in the categories of community center, fitness center, recreation facility, and swimming pool.

Developed through a unique partnership between George Mason, Prince William County, and the City of Manassas, the Freedom Center celebrates its fifth anniversary later this year. It boasts a membership of 7,800 and accommodates more than 600,000 visits per year.

The Prince William Campus has been a member of the Prince William County-Greater Manassas Chamber of Commerce since 1987. Molly Hastedt, director of campus relations, is a member of its board.

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