This list is subject to change in response to the most current guidelines for COVID-19.
How it Works: the Basic Information
When does Techny Prairie Activity Center (TPAC) Open?
Techny Prairie Activity Center is open as of January 1.
What amenities/activities are planned at TPAC?
This Northbrook Park District state-of-the-art activity center offers a cardio and strength area, two group fitness studios, an indoor track, a gymnasium and the multi-purpose Prairie Room. Designed to meet the community’s fitness and recreation needs, the net-zero building is located in one of the most beautiful settings in Northbrook.
What will the hours be for TPAC?
The base hours of operation are Monday-Friday 5:30am-9pm; Saturday and Sunday 7am-8pm. Operating hours will be assessed on an ongoing basis and may be adjusted to reflect demand and use.
Does the facility include an indoor pool?
The District considered including an indoor pool, but the budget did not allow for that amenity when the building was planned. Looking to the future, the building has been thoughtfully situated on the property to allow for possible expansion.
Are there locker rooms, showers and sauna/steam rooms available?
TPAC has day-use lockers and showers for members. Smaller personal lockers are also available elsewhere in the facility. The lockers are keyless and do not require personal locks. Locker rooms do not include saunas or steam rooms.
Can I keep my own locker?
TPAC’s keyless lockers are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and all belongings must be removed before the facility closes each day. If staff finds items that remain at the close of business, they will be moved to the lost and found.
Do I need to bring a towel?
You are welcome to bring a towel for use during your workout or if you plan to shower at TPAC, as we do not provide them in this facility. We do provide anti-bacterial wipes in the fitness area to wipe down equipment after use.
Can I wear my outside shoes in the fitness center?
We ask that you wear clean shoes in the facility. During inclement weather, please bring a change of shoes for your workout to help keep the facility clean and safe for you and others.
What are my Membership Options?
Does the membership require a 12-month commitment?
All memberships require an initial 12-month commitment. Exceptions can be made for those who complete a Membership Change Form for medical reasons with a doctor’s note or with proof of moving.
Can I put my membership on hold?
Members may request a hold for a minimum of one month up to a maximum of four months. With a written doctor’s note, members can take a medical leave for a longer period. Members are allowed one membership hold or leave per 12 months.
If I don’t use TPAC after purchasing a membership can I get a refund for the time I haven’t used?
While non-use is not a valid reason for a refund, we do offer a daily rate for those who prefer a “pay as you go” structure.
How old do I have to be to become a member?
TPAC memberships are available to those ages 15 years and older. Teen memberships start at age 13, with a required purchase and completion of the Strong Teen program. For 11- and 12-year-olds, a youth membership offers access to open gym programs and use of the indoor track with parent or caregiver supervision. The Strong Start Program is not included with teen and youth memberships.
When will Kids’ Corner open?
The Northbrook Park District has made the determination to delay the opening of Kids’ Corner Childcare at TPAC. This decision was made out of an abundance of caution to keep our members and participants safe during the unforeseen and ever-changing circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The intent is to open Kids’ Corner when it is safe to do so and the need for this service has been established.
Can my children work out with me?
Yes, teen members ages 13 and 14 may use the fitness area upon successful completion of the Strong Teen program. For safety reasons, children ages 12 and under are not permitted in the fitness area.
Tell Me More About Fees
Will my charter rates be carried over from year to year?
If you became a Charter member (prior to January 1, 2021) rates are locked in for 36 consecutive months. If your charter membership is canceled, the standard membership rates will apply upon re-joining.
Why is there a fee to use TPAC when I also pay taxes to the Park District?
Tax dollars make Northbrook Park District’s 543 acres of parks, gardens, trails, trees and open spaces throughout Northbrook possible. As with similar Park District facilities — such as Meadowhill Aquatic Center, Northbrook Sports Center, Northbrook Leisure Center and the golf courses—user fees are necessary to cover the cost of maintenance and staffing and to help us keep facilities clean, safe and in good repair. The District strives to offer affordable opportunities while ensuring we have the resources to maintain our facilities in a fiscally responsible manner, positioning the organization for future long-term stability.
While park districts are similar in terms of being tax-based organizations, the business and operational needs vary among each district and are dependent upon on community size as well as the facilities, amenities and programs offered.
The Northbrook Park District takes our fiscal responsibility to manage tax dollars seriously, focusing our efforts on limiting the portion of facility costs that will be borne by residents–whether through taxes or fees. This includes winning a $1.78 million Net Zero grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, which has helped fund construction and our industry-leading effort to limit this facility’s impact on the environment.
Were fees always a part of the plan for TPAC?
Yes, the plan for TPAC is consistent with our other facilities, such as Meadowhill Aquatic Center and Northbrook Sports Center. In general, park districts such as ours rely on memberships and user fees to help staff, operate and maintain clean, safe facilities.
Will residents be charged to use the Indoor Track?
Yes. We offer a membership structure that provides residents and non-residents access to the entire facility and all TPAC amenities. If the indoor track is your focus, our track-only membership, senior and pay-as-you-go options offer this healthy activity—along with access to locker rooms—in a facility that is staffed, clean, and safe. Learn more here: Indoor Track Membership Information
Why do we have to pay to use the Indoor Track?
As is the case with all District indoor facilities, user fees are necessary to help cover the cost of ongoing maintenance and help ensure the District has the resources to keep TPAC clean and safe.
Do you give senior discounts?
Yes, seniors age 65 years and older receive a discount on their membership. Discounts also are available for teen, youth and military/veteran memberships.
Can non-residents use the Techny Prairie Activity Center?
Yes, non-residents may use the Techny Prairie Activity Center by purchasing a non-resident membership or paying a non-resident daily fee.
Do I have to pay anything at the time I sign up?
Enrollment fees have been waived for Charter Members! When you become a Charter Member and choose the monthly installment option, you will only pay your January dues. Your next charge for February dues won’t need to be paid until 2021! If you choose to pay using the convenient annual option, full payment for 2021 is due at the time of purchase.
What are my payment options?
Members can choose to make monthly installments or one annual payment. Both payment options require an initial 12-month commitment and will be automatically renewed annually.
Why do you charge enrollment fees?
Enrollment fees help offset the cost of the initial membership including ID card processing and staff costs associated with the creation of a new membership. Enrollment fees may be waived during special promotions. To receive updates and reminders on special membership offers, join the email list here.
Do you match prices from other fitness centers?
We do not match prices for other fitness centers. We do strive to be competitive but have a responsibility to structure membership and user fees that cover safety and operational needs at each facility.
I want to be a Member, but I am not sure if I will be ready to come to a fitness center yet.
We have you covered! As a TPAC member, we will meet you where you are in your fitness journey. Membership will include access to a wide variety of cardio and strength equipment, group fitness classes, and our virtual platform for use at home and in the group fitness studios when available. Whatever your comfort level is at the time, we have a way to keep you active.
How is the Activity Center handling COVID-19 Precautions?
At TPAC, the health, safety and well-being of members and staff are our top priorities and we meet or exceed all CDC and IDPH guidelines. Physical distancing, etiquette guidelines and sanitizing standards will be emailed to members and reviewed with members during their first visit to the facility.
Will I have to make reservations to work out?
Depending on the current guidelines and capacity limits, reservations will be required for visits to TPAC including group fitness classes, cardio and strength floor and the indoor track. Information regarding reservations will be available prior to facility opening.
Will there be time set aside for safe senior use?
We don’t currently anticipate offering specific senior hours. However, all users will need to make reservations to ensure safe physical distancing. Prior to opening, we’ll make information available regarding reservations, updated to meet the latest public health guidelines.
Can I just pay daily for the fitness floor with cardio and strength equipment and/or group fitness classes?
Yes! There is a daily facility fee that includes access to the fitness floor, group fitness classes, indoor track and open gym programs.
Will someone show me how to use the equipment?
We encourage all new members to participate in the free Strong Start program which includes three 30-minute sessions led by a personal trainer. We also encourage members to purchase personal training sessions in order to develop a personalized fitness program to see the best results.
Are the basketball courts available for drop-in play?
The basketball courts are available for drop-in play to TPAC members when other programs or rentals are not scheduled. Scheduled open gym times are available for members and non-members on a weekly basis and will be advertised. Click here for open gym information.