Enumclaw Curves owners Sonna and Ken Greer, the staff at their fitness and weight management business and the roughly 300 women who work out there are grinning from ear to ear.
In October, their business was named the Curves Franchise of the Year Bronze Level for the Western Region.
It was the second honor in the couple’s brief ownership.
Enumclaw Curves has been around since 2002. Sonna Greer was a four-year member when the business went on the selling block and she and Ken snatched it up about one and a half years ago. She traded her job as a medical transcriptionist for that of a Curves owner and in 11 months turned it into a Curves Shining Star award winner, an honor handed out every two years to clubs that meet a long list of criteria.
“This club wasn’t a Shining Star club prior to that and we’re really proud of that,” Sonna Greer said.
“Our members take pride in that award too,” Ken Greer said.
That’s what’s special about both awards.
“This is a very interpersonal business,” Ken said.
The Greers received their Franchise of the Year award at the Curves National Convention in Orlando, Fla., from Gary and Diane Heavin, the fitness and advertising team that established the first Curves location in 1992 in Harlingen, Texas. The Heavins recognized the need to help prevent deteriorating health and potential illness through proper fitness, and targeted a market that had previously been ignored by the fitness industry – women who were not being served by traditional gyms. Curves franchise operations began in 1995. Franchises are 100-percent independently owned and operated.
Curves facilities are designed for women to offer 30-minute fitness and common sense weight loss. The organizations motto is “strengthening women.”
The Enumclaw Curves’ membership ranges in age from 14 to 82.
“One member has lost 100 pounds,” Ken said. “Another has reached 1,000 workouts.”
“The commitment for that – that’s amazing,” Sonna said.
Sonna Greer said of the more than 600 clubs in Washington nominated, the Enumclaw franchise was the only one nominated by the area director – and, Greer said, only the second club the area director has nominated.
When the Greers first received nomination information, they were told they were among 10 to 12 regional clubs in the running. Later, they received word they were in the top three, which meant they would earn either Gold, Silver or Bronze status. Curves has five regions, they explained, and three franchises are selected from each. The other two in the Western Region were from Orange County, Calif.
“We were one of the few single-club owners,” Sonna said. “We were one of the top 15 out of 6,300 clubs.”
Nomination for the award has many facets, one is marketing and community involvement.
The Greers are big on the latter with participation in the community’s health fair, fielding an American Cancer Society Relay For Life team, raising money for breast cancer, collecting toys this month for the city’s toy drive and bringing in 1,000 pounds of food items in March and more in Thanksgiving to donate to local food banks.
As part of the nomination, a franchise must also have overcome an obstacle and, unlike many of those in the running for Franchise of the Year, the Greer’s obstacle was personal.
Since purchasing the franchise, they have lost four family members and three close friends.
“That’s where the staff and membership was so supportive,” Ken Greer said.
The Greers said they would be honored to be nominated again in the future and plan to keep making the club better. Their goal is to maintain their Shining Star level and to keep their customers happy and busy by adding programs like the CurvesSmart and by providing important classes, like the monthly Weight Management Program for free.
Reach Brenda Sexton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-802-8206.