Calumet City native Brianna Cardenas grew up enjoying the city’s parks and programs, and is now helping provide them as park supervisor at Sandridge Fitness Center at 600 Oglesby Ave.
“My mom worked for Calumet Memorial Park District for over 20 years and my dad was always volunteering for the park, so I was always at the park with them,” Cardenas, 28, said.
“I loved the programs and the people who worked at the park. It became my second family. I just knew that working for the park was something that I wanted to do.”
Cardenas has been with the Calumet Memorial Park District since 2001, beginning as a summer camp leader at 16 and later working the recreation desk.
“I enjoy meeting new people almost every day. We get a lot of new members, or even customers who come in who have lived in Calumet City for years and didn’t even know that the fitness center existed,” she said.
“It’s fun to see them get excited knowing that we are right here in town and they can come and work out and meet new people.”
Sandridge Fitness Center recently began offering yoga, Kettlebell Boot Camp and spin classes, and Cardenas looks forward to making fitness more accessible to children.
“I love teaching sports. I would like to be able to offer a camp for young kids who are just starting out to learn these sports or even to improve their skills,” she said.
Cardenas is a 2003 Thornton Fractional North High School graduate, and attended Kaplan College in Hammond for massage therapy.
Now residing in Chicago, she is a parishioner of St. Victor Church in Calumet City, and is married to Mikey Cardenas. They have three children: Connor, Xavier and Sofia.