A building that housed the former Fastenal business was transformed with tender loving care by Gib Graham when he created Mexico Strength and Fitness, which held its ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday morning at 721 W. Jackson St.
"We had to do a lot of cleaning, a lot of painting..." he said. "We laid all the flooring down, replaced some of the lights, installed security cameras."
The business is available to customers 24/7 to accommodate anyone's work schedule, Graham said. Memberships are available through a monthly contract and all members will have a special key fob to track membership attendance at the building. Graham said he's already noted customers who do his or her workouts at 1 a.m. or 3 a.m.
Right now the facility is dedicated to strength and fitness. There are no plans for specific classes at this time and while classes may not be offered by the business, a member could organize and run a class, Graham said.
Tracy Graham, Gib's father and member of the Audrain County Commission, said his son saved money to purchase the equipment and open for business without debt.
"I opened up because I thought Mexico needed something like this," Gib Graham said. "We have other gyms, but nothing 24 hours. … Mexico is my home and you've always got to improve your home, right?" Graham said.
Mexico Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dana Keller said Gib Graham is part of an exciting trend. “It is so great to see the youth of Mexico return as entrepreneurs and support the community,” she said.
Mexico Strength and Fitness has an open-style environment, with the front area containing cardio and fitness machines, while a side room is dedicated to strength building with a variety of free weights, benches and plate-loaded machines.