McCarthy Gym, which has been closed since last spring for extensive remodeling, reopened for students, staff and faculty this morning.

Located on the University of St. Thomas south campus (south of Summit Avenue and west of Cretin Avenue), the gym opened in 1968 primarily for the use of priests and seminarians from the St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity. St. Thomas acquired the gym under a 1987 affiliation agreement between the university and the seminary.

As part of the renovation, McCarthy’s pool was removed and replaced with a multipurpose, wood-floor gym that can be used for basketball, volleyball, pickle ball, badminton and other activities. The renovation also included new men’s and women’s locker and shower areas, and cardio and strength areas and equipment. The gym’s four racquetball and handball courts were refurbished last spring and remain.

The second gym was added in part to replace the heavily used third-floor gym in O’Shaughnessy Hall, which was torn down to make room for the newly opened Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex as well as the Anderson Student Center, which is now under construction at the corner of Summit and Cretin avenues. 

The new locker facilities will bring an end to a problem that has plagued McCarthy for years. Because it originally was built for priests and seminarians, it did not have equal-size locker areas for men and women. The larger locker area was used by women until noon each day; after noon, women used a smaller locker facility. The gym’s sauna, which had been in the larger locker room, has been removed.

McCarthy Gym will be open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. It will be open from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturdays, and will be closed on Sundays.

The facility is free and open to all St. Thomas students, staff and faculty. A valid St. Thomas ID, which will be swiped through a card reader at the gym’s front desk, is required for each visit.  Staff and faculty do not need to purchase a membership in the Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex to use McCarthy Gym.

Details about the AARC membership plans can be found here.  In general, a faculty and staff membership is $30 per month, but the fee can be reduced to $0 if the faculty or staff member uses the athletic facilities 12 or more times per month. A visit to either the AARC or McCarthy Gym will count toward those 12 visits. To qualify for the membership-fee rebate, faculty and staff must swipe their cards to register each visit. A card can be swiped only once per day at either facility to count toward the rebate.

Guest and neighbor passes for McCarthy Gym will be available starting Oct. 1. The cost for a punch card is $100 for 20 visits. More details about this program will be announced soon.

Ryan Companies Inc. of Minneapolis was the contractor for the McCarthy project. The gymnasium upgrades were part of the busiest construction and renovation summer in the history of St. Thomas.

The phone number for the McCarthy Gym front desk is (651) 962-5925.