covid-19 updates

St Paul HERO


Wednesday, June 10

We look forward to welcoming you back to the Shaller Family Health and Wellness Wing at the St. Paul JCC! We are reopening the J in phases and while your experience may be slightly different than before, the care for our members and staff remains the same. Every decision made regarding reopening has been made with you in mind.  When you are ready to come back to the J, we will be here to safely serve you.


Phase I
On June 24, we will open the Fitness Center including the use of cardio & weight machines, personal training, small group training, Pilates, and fitness center open spaces.  We will continue to offer our virtual group exercise classes and will be bringing back many of your favorite instructors at this time.

Phase II
In-person Group Exercise classes are tentatively scheduled to begin on July 5.

Phase III & IV
The JCC will continue to monitor the success of Phase I & II and will determine when the Aquatics Center, Locker rooms and other facilities and activities will be able to open and in what order.

While the Covid-19 pandemic has proven to be a complicated time, and reopening the JCC is both exciting and challenging, we are doing everything we can to ensure that we are creating a safe and healthy environment for all who will enter our doors. In addition to our amended procedures, we are asking you – our members – to partner with us by adhering to health guidelines, open & honest communication, and patience. We can’t wait to see you here at the J!

Friday, June 5, 2020

With Governor Walz’s announcement that fitness centers may open at limited capacity, we are finalizing our in-depth plans for a phased approach to reopen in a safe and timely way. We will be cautious and thoughtful and will abide by the recommendations of the CDC to create a healthy and safe place for our members. We will provide details next week.

Monday, May 26

As we are entering the next phase of response to Covid-19, we have been developing protocols and procedures that will allow us to reopen the JCC cautiously with the health and safety of our staff and members as our highest priority. We have outlined in-depth procedures around building access, facility modifications, cleaning protocols, staff training, social distancing, reporting and more. These procedures have been developed with the guidance of the CDC, the MDH and experts both locally and nationally.

Under our plan, we will reopen the JCC in phases, allowing us to assess our processes and make modifications to ensure best practices along the way. The first phase will begin on Thursday, June 11 and will include opening the Early Childhood Center and limited childcare for school-aged children.

The opening of the Health & Wellness Department will also be executed in phases beginning with the Fitness Center in Phase II and additional facilities, programming, and amenities in Phase III and IV. The start of Phase II will be determined once the Governor’s orders allow for the opening of Fitness Centers. In the coming weeks, we will share our detailed protocols and planning regarding the Health and Wellness Department.

As we plan for the future, we are doing everything we can to ensure that we are creating a safe and healthy environment for all who will enter our doors. Thank you for your support and patience.



Friday, May 8, 2020

We have made the difficult decision to postpone the opening of our summer day camps – Camp Olami and Camp Butwin, through July 10. It is clear that the necessary restrictions and guidelines in place would not allow for us to offer a camp experience in a way that aligns with our mission, upholds the integrity of our program, and reflects our unique culture of camp, while still ensuring a safe place for campers, families, and staff.

Please note – the July 10 date applies to camp only. We are vigilantly monitoring guidelines and communications from the CDC, MDH, and Governor Walz as we think about how and when we might be able to reopen our Early Childhood Centers, Fitness Centers and other programming. At this time, our facilities remain closed.

As we plan for the future, we are developing in-depth protocols that will allow us to open safely – everything from adapting our environments to cleaning & sanitizing to social distancing. We are seeking the advice of experts and partners both near and far. It is our top priority to ensure that we do whatever we can to create a safer way for us to be together. We will keep you informed along the way.

April 24, 2020

This is a reminder that, though the JCC facilities remain temporarily closed, JCC membership dues continue to support the critical work, inclusive mission, work we are engaged in virtually to support our community.

IF YOU CHOSE TO FREEZE YOUR MEMBERSHIP IN APRIL, we will continue to freeze your membership dues for May or until we reopen our doors. No action or response is needed by you.

IF YOU ARE CONTINUING TO PAY YOUR MEMBERSHIP DUES, thank you! We are so grateful for your investment in the JCC as your membership helps sustain your JCC during these uncertain times. Should you continue to choose this option for May, No action or response is needed by you.

If you find, at this time, that you want to put your membership on hold for May, please contact Kyle Koch at by April 28.

Because the JCC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, dues, tuition or fees for which no services are rendered can be considered a tax-deductible donation.

The health and safety of our community is our highest priority. During this closure, we are working behind the scenes to develop protocols and practices that will include social distancing, enhanced cleaning and sanitizing, and adapted programming. Our decision as to when and how to reopen will based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)Minnesota Department of Public Health, local health officials and our JCC leadership. We will keep you updated along the way.

April 14, 2020

In the days immediately following our closing, the JCCs shifted our focus to serve and support our community differently and I am proud of the amazing work that has taken place to create a Virtual JCC and to connect directly with many of our program participants – from seniors to inclusion participants to early childhood families, bringing people together for fitness, learning and connection. The way our staff adapted – and your response – has been amazing.

After keeping every JCC staff member paid in full for the past five weeks, the unprecedented challenge of this pandemic and our extended closure has had a significant financial impact, to the point that we have had to make some difficult decisions. Over 130 staff will continue their work to keep the JCC operating our virtual programming and supportive services. However, we have had to temporarily place a number of our staff on furlough effective April 16. Additionally, the JCC leadership staff have taken a voluntary reduction in pay, understanding that we must all do our part to preserve our ability to reopen and bring back staff as quickly as possible once it is safe to do so.

It has been profoundly heartwarming that hundreds of you are graciously and generously donating your membership dues, ECC tuition and/or program fees, and making additional charitable gifts to support the JCC in these difficult times. Thank you! This is making, and will continue to make, a meaningful difference in our ability to compensate our working staff, and sustain our mission for all in the community who depend on the J.

The role of the JCC has always been to be the place where people can gather – where people welcome and take care of one another. We will continue our work through our Virtual JCC, providing every opportunity for you to engage and connect. We look forward to serving you in person, welcoming back our staff, and to re-opening our doors to our community.

April 2, 2020

The JCC facilities will remain closed through at least May 1. Our decision as to when and how to reopen will be based on recommendations from the CDC, Minnesota Department of Health, local health officials and our JCC leadership. We will keep you posted along the way.

Please remember that investing membership dues and fees to support the critical work, inclusive mission, and professional staff of the JCC is a tax-deductible donation. Because the JCC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, dues for which no services are rendered can be considered a tax-deductible donation. Or you may choose to freeze your membership starting April 1, at no cost, and activate your membership without penalty upon the building’s reopening. Contact Kyle Koch, Customer Service Manager, at

The role of the JCC has always been to be the place that people can gather – where people welcome and take care of one another. That continues to be our mission and we are working hard to keep us all connected! Click here to visit YOUR VIRTUAL JCC


Thursday, March 19

We are working to create tools and resources to help you stay healthy, connected and engaged during these unprecedented times. Over the coming days, we will be adding online and virtual programming including cultural arts programming, sing-alongs for families, early childhood enrichment, remote discussions and more! If you have an idea, please let us know!

We now have over 500 ways to enjoy fitness from home, special workouts and wellness videos for Silver Sneakers participants and classes by your favorite JCC group exercise instructors.

As a member of the St. Paul JCC, you have exclusive access to tools only available through the J and our partner, EXOS. We are a proud partner of EXOS, a global leader in fitness center excellence, recognized for their knowledge, background, credentials and ability to help people with diverse goals and abilities. We want to introduce you to Journey, our digital hub that will offer you guidance and tools available exclusively to you.

Getting started is easy. Please email Anna Golv at for your personal invite code, then simply complete your 15-minute online assessment that is focused on how you think, eat, move and recover. It’s fun, engaging, thoughtful and will capture a snapshot of your current state of being, within the 4 pillars of performance: Mindset, Nutrition, Movement and Recovery. Once you have completed your assessment, please reach out to Anna and you will be ready to complete your complimentary virtual consultation with our trainers.

We will be updating content daily! The role of the JCC has always been to be the place that people can gather – where people welcome and take care of one another. That continues to be our mission and we are working hard to keep us all connected!

Sunday, March 15

As we have been tracking the ever-changing COVID-19 situation, we have been making our decisions based on the recommendations of the CDC and the Minnesota Department of Health. While schools in Minnesota are now closing on Wednesday for two weeks, we have made the difficult decision to close the JCC. We are confident this is the right decision on behalf our members, staff and visitors. Please note – there has not been any confirmed cases of COVID-19 at either JCC. In deciding to close, we are complying with the State’s recommendation and doing our part to reduce the rate of transmission.

This is a terribly painful decision. The role of the JCC has always been to be the place that people can gather, connect with one another, and exercise their bodies, minds and souls. It is a place where people welcome and take care of one another. That continues to be our mission. In the coming days, we will be working to find creative ways to keep connecting people with each other, whether that is through distance learning or exercise broadcasts or check-ins with isolated people in our community.


  • We will reach out to you later this week, to let you know when you can briefly stop by and pick up any personal belongings that you would like to have during the closure; if you do not need to come in, please refrain from doing so
  • We are working on ways to keep you connected during this time and will continue to communicate
  • We know that you will have many questions regarding membership and program fees. We will follow-up within 48 hours with more information

We will also be doing everything possible to reopen quickly, from deep cleaning to staff training and, of course, staying closely in touch with our public health authorities. The JCC will open again when, guided by health experts, our leadership determines it is safe and prudent. In the meantime, many of our staff will be impacted. You already know the extraordinary dedication of the teachers, trainers, presenters, and countless others who are the lifeblood of this place. We will be doing everything we can to ensure continuity for them, and to make it possible for them to be back in place the moment our doors reopen.

Thank you for your support and your understanding—and for taking care of each other at this difficult time. We are proud to serve this community.

Thursday, March 12

As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) information continues to evolve, I want to provide an update. The St. Paul JCC continues to monitor the situation and stay abreast of updates, from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Minnesota Department of Public Health and local health officials, about the diagnosis and management of cases of novel Coronavirus, as applicable. The health and safety of our community is our highest priority.

In addition to our routine maintenance, we have added staff hours to make our routines even more rigorous. This means more time disinfecting commonly touched surfaces such as door handles, push bars, elevator buttons, Mezzuzot and other such areas. We have increased signage throughout the Fitness Center to remind members to wipe down equipment. In addition, our fitness staff are disinfecting equipment every 30 minutes. Hand sanitizer is easily accessible throughout the building.

We will be regularly reviewing all upcoming events to determine if any changes to programs are required and will provide any updates directly to participants. In an abundance of caution for our most vulnerable participants, we have canceled or postponed select programs based on recommendations limiting large gatherings. Below is a list of  postponed & canceled programs, through April 3.

  • Creative Writing Workshop POSTPONED
  • Women’s Roundtable POSTPONED
  • Men’s Club Roundtable POSTPONED
  • Book Group POSTPONED
  • Lunch for 8 POSTPONED
  • Create and Donate POSTPONED
  • Out on the Town – World War II Posters CANCELED
  • Drop In Mah Jongg POSTPONED
  • Knitting Socks POSTPONED
  • Loft Class CANCELED
  • AARP Smart Driving – 4/2 CANCELED
  • Twin Cities Cultural Arts: Artists’ Lab CANCELED
  • Twin Cities Cultural Arts: TRYmester – 3/22 @ Sabes NEW DATE: SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 25
  • P2G Exhibit + Art Reception – 3/29 @ St. Paul POSTPONED
  • Symphony Family Concert – 4/5 @ St. Paul CANCELED


The St. Paul JCC Fitness Center will remain open during normal business hours. In light of public health recommendations, we will continue to monitor the CDC recommendations and will adapt our programming accordingly.

At this point, the Minnesota Department of Health has not recommended school closures. To that end, our Early Childhood Center and Club J will remain open.

If you, or anyone in your household, are planning upcoming travel to countries designated by the CDC as Level 3 for Coronavirus concerns, please inform me. Additional countries could be designated as Level 3 at any time, so please check the CDC’s Travel Health Notices regularly.

In addition, please inform me if you think that you may have been exposed to any person who has been confirmed to have Coronavirus.

A 48-hour building shutdown would occur immediately upon the confirmed coronavirus diagnosis of a JCC visitor or any person who lives in the same house as that visitor. We would look to the Minnesota Department of Health for additional guidance about campus closures for any other types of potential exposure.

Anyone visiting a CDC-designated Level 3 country and anyone residing in their home, as well as anyone diagnosed with coronavirus or residing with a diagnosed individual, will not be permitted to return to the St. Paul JCC until they:

  • complete the CDC-recommended 14-day self-quarantine;
  • present documented clearance from their health care provider; and
  • are free from fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Please know that that this is a rapidly changing situation and this is where we are right now. As information changes and becomes available, we will continue to assess and keep you informed via email and our website. If you have any questions, please reach out to me at or 651 + 255 4733.

In good health,

Corey Kirshenbaum, COO

Help Us Keep Our Community Healthy

For Vulnerable Populations: Limit Outings

  • Vulnerable populations include people who are:
  • 60 years old and older.
  • People with certain health conditions such as heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, kidney disease and weakened immune systems

Keep others healthy

  • Stay home if you, or someone in your household, feels sick especially with fever or flu-like symptoms.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze.
  • If you have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19, or have recently been to international locations with widespread, ongoing transmission (China, Iran, South Korea, Italy), please stay home.

Keep yourself healthy

  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Try alternatives to shaking hands, like an elbow bump or wave.
  • If you have recently returned from a country, state or region with ongoing COVID-19 infections, monitor your health and follow the instructions of public health officials.

Be kind

  • Treat one another with Chesed / loving kindness. During stressful times people may direct their fear or anxiety toward others.