As 2021 draws to a close, it’s a good time to reflect on all of the great moments that have made Alchemy an even stronger community this year. We talk a lot about family at Alchemy and it really is the “x-factor” in our business. We love that Alchemy is not only the place you come to challenge yourself physically, but that it’s also a kind of town square, a place to meet new people and forge lasting relationships.
Without further ado, here are Alchemy’s most memorable moments in 2021:
We gave back
Our members have big hearts and always make time to show up for one another, a fact made abundantly clear in the success of our charitable events. The year of giving started off on January 1, with our 9th Annual Jeff Burton Charity WOD (which we just hosted again this year on New Year’s Day 2022), which benefits the local charitable organization Alternatives for Youth in Hamilton and St. Leonard’s Community Services in Brantford. In June, we hosted the annual WODs for Wishes event, which is a tribute to Coach Craig’s older brother Jenner, who passed away from cancer at the age of 11. We have never had a greater show of support and we were able to raise an official total of $25545. THIS. IS. INCREDIBLE.
The 2021 CrossFit Open took over much of February and March and we had an epic turnout, with more than 300 members taking the challenge in our parallel competition, The Alchemy Open. In the end, The incREDibles came out the winners. In August we hosted our 7th annual Summer Olympics, which has always been one of my favourite events. I am rendered speechless each year with how seriously each “country” takes this event. And just like in the real Olympics, our athletes show up in team colours (if not full costume), strategies are discussed before each event, and on more than one occasion, medal results have been intensely argued. Congratulations to the Netherlands for taking home the gold medals! In October, The Fall Classic, our annual fitness event, was a huge success bringing partners together to showcase their skills over two days. It is always amazing to watch so many of our members put their fitness to the test in a way many of them never have.
We had some fun, made new friends — and had a bunch of babies.
We spent our time locked out of the gym trying to come up with different ways to engage you and keep the Alchemy family together. We had the Alche-May Team Challenge (which was a play on last year’s Jacked by June) and we hosted a ‘Hunt in Hamilton’ Adventure Run with Don’t Get Lost. But the craziest event we put together was the Alchemy Amazing Race! We “travelled” around the World together, accomplishing incredible tasks and eventually Team Black sprinted past everybody else on the final leg to arrive at the finish line first (still under dispute).
We welcomed three new coaches into the mix this year. Coach Patrick is a well-recognized long time member but we also found Coach’s Kristin and Eryl from outside the community and they could not have been a better fit.
My wife and I welcomed our 2nd child, Lincoln, into the mix and we certainly were not alone. So many of our members have expanded their family this past year or, like Coach Broder, are awaiting the arrival of their newest additions. Congratulations to you all, we will keep the gym open as long as possible this year as clearly it is effective contraception.
We celebrated together
The capper to 2021 had to be our Holiday Galas. I have always said that the CrossFit Open is my favourite time of year and that the Summer Olympics are my favourite event, but I think the Gala means the most to me. I cannot express how happy I am to see so many of you decide to join us each year to celebrate the members of Alchemy. There really is no greater measure of the state of our business than the attendance that marks this event. If our sales never grow, our client base never expands, or any other traditional measure of success never improves, I will honestly be happy if our annual Gala continues to draw an ever bigger crowd. We love you all like family and you make it a pleasure to come into work each day.
Here’s to 2021 and hoping 2022 brings with it another year full of health, performance, family and fun.