Northern Regional Recreation Center: Fun, Fitness & Family Time

Combining passions for health and wellness, social equity, and conservation, Mecklenburg County’s newest regional recreation center for all ages opened last June to rave reviews.

With an amazing 85,000-square-feet of inside space, the Northern Regional Recreation Center is also ideally situated outside, on 40 acres of lush, mature forest area in Cornelius. You’ll discover a mix of pines, hardwoods, and a tributary with lots of plant and animal diversity. (For kids, that means frogs, toads, butterflies, deer, and much more!) The center has you covered for both outdoor and indoor fun!


Inside, there’s an eight-lane, 25-yard lap pool, a family-friendly leisure pool, and various fitness areas including an elevated walking and running track. All fitness classes except for water aerobics are free with the purchase of a membership. You’ll find a multi-purpose indoor sports court for basketball, volleyball, badminton, indoor soccer, and pickleball, to offer a variety of sports for all. The facility is also available to rent for social activities, such as parties and corporate events. Watch for family special events and core programs such as camps, swim lessons, senior programs, and fitness programs. 


Throughout the year, the center staff plans to partner with community groups to host family festivals and food drives, as well as joining with The Women’s Shelter and Novant Health to provide Covid shots and free vaccines for children. 

From children and youth to senior adults, the goal is to include everyone in their healthy mission!

“Some of our most popular youth programs include youth sports, after-school activities, summer camp, open gym, and our leisure pool for youth sports and homeschool PE,” says Justin Jackson, Recreation Manager.“For younger kids we have Child Watch, Culinary Kids, Arts and Crafts, and Kinder creations.”


There are plenty of fun options for seniors also, including group trips, Senior Nutrition Program (providing a free healthy lunch for seniors Monday through Friday), senior yoga, line dancing, and senior chair fit.

“We invite local groups to participate in our special events, and we also work with the Town of Davidson and Cornelius on a number of events,” adds Justin.

When it’s time to hit the great outdoors and address conservation, there’s no shortage of fun and learning on the agenda!

“We teach kids how to grow vegetables, as well as the importance of recycling,” says Justin. “We also offer a program that allows teens to work during the year, and learn how to teach agricultural and recreational programs.”

You’ll see raised garden beds on-site, with gardening programs for the community available. There’s a new greenhouse planned for this Spring, to increase efforts to educate the community on gardening, composting, and making wiser eating choices. 

A family membership to the Northern Regional Recreation Center is $65.00 per month, which includes two adults and four children. Adult memberships are $45.00 per month, and a Senior membership is $22.00 per month. Walk-ins are welcome for a daily entry fee of $10.00, and all group exercise programs are free with a membership.

The new Northern Regional Recreation Center is located at 121 Old Statesville Road in Cornelius, 980-314-6772. Learn more about all the activities they offer at Hours are Monday through Thursday 5:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m., Friday 5:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m., Saturday 8:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m., and Sunday 1:00 p.m.- 6:30 p.m.


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