Rachel Jackson

Alder Partners Aims for Big Impact With Mini Judgement Free Zone

Contributing to the communities in Boston and Atlanta where its 21 Planet Fitness® clubs are located is a value Alder Partners emphasizes daily. With the Boys & Girls Club of America (BGCA) also headquartered in Atlanta, franchisee Stanley DeMartinis Jr. set out to impact the organization at its home base.

Because BGCA services tens of thousands of kids, many in struggling areas of Atlanta, it was important for Alder Partners to bring the Judgement Free Zone® (JFZ) message directly to the youth through a mini JFZ. The process began by locating a facility that had space available and staff on site to safely monitor the children using the gym. Salvation Army Atlanta Peachcrest Boys & Girls Club in Decatur was the perfect recipient of the mini fitness center for more than one reason. “The fact that we were able to build a mini Judgement Free Zone in Decatur, where we opened our first Atlanta club, made it even more special,” DeMartinis explained.

After putting together plans for the space, Alder Partners went to work crafting a custom area for the youth to stay fit. Team members, vendors and partners in Atlanta donated time, materials or both to assist with the project. Robbie Ciampi, a member of maintenance and construction, was a standout asset for the franchise group. “He was onsite every day working with our construction crew, helping to ensure the project stayed on track to open on time, giving us regular updates on progress, and troubleshooting any obstacles that came up,” said DeMartinis.

“We realized how lucky we are to work with such great partners in the Atlanta market,” DeMartinis added. “We were humbled and truly appreciative of all the labor and materials that were donated on behalf of our local vendors in Atlanta. Many have been with us since our first buildout in Decatur, and they turned around and put the same effort into this project that they do for all our clubs in the market.”

When it came time to open up the mini Judgement Free Zone, Alder Partners went all out, decorating the gym in PF® colors and providing a light dinner for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The children and their parents heard from DeMartinis and the club’s director, Maj. Kelly English, during the event, which was attended by Dineen Boyle from PFHQ, Alder Partners’ FBC Cory Ouellette and Allison Porter, the Precor representative and equipment vendor for the project.

In addition, Planet Fitness partners with the Atlanta Hawks, which sent down team mascot Harry the Hawk and members of the dance team to celebrate with the youth. With the mini JFZ located directly off the BGCA’s gymnasium, Harry tried his hand at half-court shots, posed for pictures, and held dance-offs with the kids while they waited to go into the fitness area. Alder Partners’ head trainer, Deon Brown, was also on hand to provide instruction to the children on how to properly use the new equipment.

“The kids loved the mini Judgement Free Zone! They were so excited to be able to go in and check out all of the equipment, in a safe, judgement-free environment,” DeMartinis said. “They couldn’t believe we could take what was essentially a few storage closets previously and turn it into a brand-new fitness facility just for them.”

The impact of giving back serves as a constant reminder for the franchise group of the importance of projects like the mini JFZ. “Many of our team members, especially in the Atlanta market, have overcome life obstacles many of us have never seen. We want them to know that, not only are we proud to have them as employees but we are proud to celebrate their success in surpassing those challenges and showing their fellow community members how much we care about them,” DeMartinis said. “During this Mini Judgement Free Zone grand-opening event, we could feel the impact we had on the members of that Boys & Girls Club, from the children all the way up to their parents and the community partners who were onsite with us.”

Taymax Clubs Come to the Assistance of California Wildfire Victims

In late 2018, the United States watched as the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California history, the Camp Fire, ravaged the area around Paradise, California. With its neighbors facing unimaginable devastation, Taymax Group Acquisition’s Yuba City Planet Fitness® jumped into action.

Located less than an hour south of Paradise, the club’s general manager, Catherine Peterson, began formulating a plan to assist those impacted by the disaster. Peterson organized goody bags and giveaways, and the location opened its facilities for first responders and those touched by the wildfire to come in, work out, shower or just take a moment away from the destruction.

When franchisee Tim Kelleher’s other locations in the region heard what was happening, they stepped up to the plate. Together, 11 Taymax clubs worked to collect items to send to those affected. Each location brought in a 40-gallon container, decorated it and placed them in the gym with signage explaining to members and the community the company’s goal of giving back to fire victims.

“All the staff and members were very engaged in this donation drive, and it was very well received. For example, one member sewed over 100 stuffed owls for kids and many other members made multiple donations,” said Regional Manager Layna Luchte.

Taymax gathered everything from toys to clothing, bedding to baby supplies, shoes to shower supplies. In just two weeks, more than 4,000 items were collected, and the group’s entire regional management team, maintenance team and general managers loaded five PF® vehicles and made the two-hour trek to deliver the supplies.

The efforts are just the latest example of how Taymax’s 58 locations strive to support their communities. “A big focus for the regional management team in 2018 was to build team connections across all of our clubs and raise awareness about the Judgement Free Zone® across the region,” said Luchte. “This drive helped tremendously with each of these goals.”

Alder Partners Celebrates 5-Year Anniversaries for Three Atlanta Locations

Alder Partners, LLC is marking milestone five-year anniversaries for several clubs in its Atlanta market. Located outside the city’s 64-mile “loop” created by Interstate 285, the group’s Conyers, Fayetteville and Stone Mountain clubs have found success in the suburbs.

“These clubs have been consistent performers, and Conyers has always been a huge location for us,” said franchisee Stanley DeMartinis Jr.

Part of the success for the PF clubs is attributed to key personnel who have grown with the organization. “Brentley Corcho has been with our organization at various levels and locations for over five years now and is currently the manager at Conyers,” DeMartinis said. “Tiffany Brown has also been with our group for more than five years and currently is our regional manager overseeing the territory Fayetteville falls under.” 

At 29,000 square feet, the Fayetteville Planet Fitness on the southwest side of Atlanta was Alder Partners’ 10th location, coming after the 23,000-square-foot Conyers club and 18,000-square-foot Stone Mountain location. And, DeMartinis and Alder Partners see no stopping the franchise group’s growth.

“We are looking to open three to four clubs this year, including at least one ground-up build, in the Atlanta ADA,” DeMartinis said.