Oxford Athletic Club to close Sunday
Friday, May 28, 2010
After a 50-year business run, Oxford Athletic Club operators have announced plans to close the Vancouver business for good on Sunday.
“It’s just a personal decision on our family’s part,” said Angie Friauf, who has co-owned the club with her husband, Trey Friauf, since 2005.
The 25,000-square-foot facility and parking lot were sold, according to Angie Friauf, but she would not disclose the name of the buyer or the price. Club members were notified by letters mailed out and posted at the club at 7588 Delaware Lane. Friauf said the buyer would use the building for a different purpose.
She said Oxford’s main facility would be open through Sunday. Swim classes will continue through June 17.
“This has been a family club in every sense of the word and we will miss everyone dearly,” said Angie Friauf, granddaughter of the club’s original owners, Jim and Eleanor Hicks.
The club’s 50 employees were notified this week, said Friauf, who acknowledged that Oxford faced increasing competition from area newcomers, such as LA Fitness, 24-Hour Fitness and the $18 million Firstenburg Community Center, which opened in 2006.
The newer, state-of-the-art facilities and Clark County’s slumping economy have been blamed for several recent club closures, including Bally Fitness in 2009 and Landover Athletic Club in 2007.
At one time, Oxford Athletic claimed more than 2,000 members, a total that slipped by about 10 percent over the past few years, Friauf said.
Since 1960, hundreds of exercise buffs used the Heights-area club for its weight room, racquetball courts and gymnasium. Thousands of children learned to swim in the club’s indoor pool, Friauf said.
“Aerobics classes were first taught with a live organist,” she said.
Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly described the club's square footage.