Club Insider

Keith and Kathy Rawlings' Arena Club

Making It FUN for Every Family

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  • Keith and Kathy Rawlings, Owners of The Arena Club
  • The Arena Club in Bel Air, Maryland
  • Aerial View of The Arena Club's Aquatics Complex
  • The Arena Club's Indoor Turf Field
  • The Sports Factory at The Arena Club
  • Gymnasium and Trampoline Park at The Arena Club
  • Kathy and Her Sons: Kurt, 20 (Left), and Keifer, 21 (Right)

For years, Club Insider has published at least one ad each month that simply says: Make It FUN! The reason for this is quite simple; it is our way to remind our readers that the health and fitness club industry is supposed to be FUN! Sure, there is the daily, weekly, monthly and yearly pressures of successfully running a business in ever-increasingly competitive markets. But, without FUN, the product of health and fitness is a hard one to sell. Our industry's top challenge is that it is easier for people to sit around and live an inactive lifestyle. They know the consequences, but creating action is still difficult. A key way to combat that is to sell fun, in addition to the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. Throw in a focus on the family unit and you have the formula that serves The Arena Club in Bel Air, Maryland.

The owners of The Arena Club, Keith and Kathy Rawlings, did not start their professional careers in the health and fitness club industry. Keith, in commercial real estate, and Kathy, in sales of surgical instruments, came across an opportunity to purchase an old racquetball club, Harford Health and Fitness, and they dove in head first. The early times were challenging, but they found their niche in two keys areas: (1) Truly listening to the needs and wants of their community, and (2) the focus on family.

Today, The Arena Club is an 80,000+ square-foot facility with an amenities list that reads like an amusement park as much as it does a health and fitness club. Focusing on constant improvement and reinvention, and leading an incredible team of loyal staff members, Keith and Kathy's Arena Club has made the break to become a premier facility in their community. All the while, they have listened to that community and made it FUN for anyone who comes through their front doors.

I welcome you to read on as we interview Kathy Rawlings, Co-Owner of The Arena Club.

An Interview With Kathy Rawlings, Co-Owner of The Arena Club

Club Insider (C.I.) - Please tell us a little about your personal background: Where were you born and where did you grow up? And, where did you go to school and what did you study?
Kathy Rawlings (KR) - I was born in Hollywood, Florida, and I grew up in Towson, Marlyand. I went to Towson University and played Field Hockey there. I studied Mass Communications and had a minor in Health and Natural Sciences.

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