For decades, a famous institution in Sierra de la Ventana has been involved in recreational activities, teamwork and sports in general. It is Ymcapolis, a creation of Young Men’s Christian Association.
Ymcapolis, a Synonym for Sierra
For a long time, Sierra de la Ventana has been known because the Young Men’s Christian Association sport and recreational camp called Ymcapolis was placed in Villa Arcadia, what is to say Sierra de la Ventana.
In Argentina, this institution was born in May 6th, 1902 and it is one of the eldest in Latin America. There were 108 founding members in the ceremony held in the auditorium located at 718 Corrientes Street.
The first president was A. Carnegie Ross and, until 1912, the minutes of the board meetings were written in English, even though they were made here in Argentina. Territorial expansion gained by English capitals as the railway developed turned Sierra de la Ventana into a very interesting place to set up the new headquarters. Thus, Ymcapolis was born.
An ideal place
Heated swimming pool
In contact with nature
In harmony with the surroundings
Pioneer in Our Country
As a civil society organization, the association has been faithful to its volunteer, open and participatory character, basing its activities upon essential human values and working to help overcome unfair situations which affect the full development of the people and their community.
It is difficult to find any field in the country in which the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) did not take part. It has been involved in cultural, social, recreational and sports aspects, as well as in health care and quality of life. Sierra de la Ventana is a place where all these values were put into practice and have become models for many generations.
In the field of sports, apart from having introduced basketball, volleyball, baseball and indoor soccer, and having the first heated swimming pool, the Association gave origin to most of the sport federations as a way of organizing sports in Argentina.
For years, the institution has been in charge of organizing tourist programs for schools and individual groups. One of the best known programs concerns high school graduate trips to Sierra de la Ventana. Many school groups from all around the province and the rest of the country who visited the area, surely visited Ymcapolis as well, a heavenly spot on the banks of the Negro Stream.
Today, after various generations have discovered tourism and nature thanks to this association, the phrase is as valid as ever: Whenever we say we have been in Sierra de la Ventana, the first question we hear is “At the YMCA? The inevitable nostalgia takes us back to a past when a camp, a tent and a campfire were everything.
Pablo Etchevers Gentileza Ymca.org.ar