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KeatherSwim
July 18th, 2002, 12:10 AM
Yeah, this has a little to do with the "how to promote the sport" discussion, but what would some of you feel about this.

We have Turkey Trots and Jingle Bell Runs and who knows how many walks for charity, even boke rides - what about swims for chairty? You don't have to be a good swimmer, although some ostensibly would be. But you just need to get sponsors for like whatever cents a lap, or a 1/4 mile or whatever, and get in the pool and raise money for something. It would take some organizing on the part of the more motivated, but POSSIBLY it would draw some people to the sport, raising money, not giving it to the participants and maybe some people who are more on the famous side would come to host it to get people there, or particpiating, or maybe even not and it could fly on it's own.

Just an idea I had and wanted to run it by some swimmers. So would you participate, and how do you think it would go?

MetroSwim
July 18th, 2002, 12:24 AM
It's already being done - Swim Across America has quite a few events (not necessarily Masters Events), and, closer to home for those of us in New York, the Swim for the Future, honoring Doug Irgang and Andrew Fisher, Masters Swimmers lost on September 11th.

Procedes from a meet held in their honor go towards providing financial support for young competitive swimmers who show dedication and passion for the sport, but have limited financial capacity to pursue their dreams.

We swim for fitness, fun and friendly competition, but events like these may help the future stars of swimming or maybe just prospective future masters members.

I'm pretty sure that there are a lot of USMS events that similarly bring funds and attention for good causes.

KeatherSwim
July 18th, 2002, 12:47 AM
I see what you're saying... but I'm thinking of taking it beyond aiding swimming or sports. If a walk can benefit breast cancer (noble goal I know), why not a swim benefitting something similar. There are people who might not consider any form of exercise for anything but if it's a huge cause, they'll walk the equivalent of a Marathon to help out. Some of these same people might not get in a pool for other swimmers that they don't particulary care about... you know... water scares some people, but and only Heaven knows why, they'll "brave" the water for a disease. Of course, we might loose some of the proceeds on extra lifeguards on that note (and to be honest, I'd rather swim for charity than walk for it ay day). ;) But oh well.... see where I am going with this. I know you mentioned Swim Across America, but (yes I am idealistic) can't we do more? We love to swim. Why not help out whatever we can by doing it?

laura wright
July 18th, 2002, 07:33 AM
Here in Central Ohio we do have a charity swim - Swim for Diabetes every March. It's quite well attended, and people can swim their laps at any one of about 40 or 50 pools across the region. It's been going on for at least 10 years that I know of.

alexknibbs
July 18th, 2002, 11:26 AM
Hi there,

Just for info 'from the UK', we have an annual event called the BT Swimathon. Participants swim 5000 metres at one of some 500 or so designated pools around the country. It's essentially for a small number of named charities which can vary from year to year.

Winners of age groups (youngsters right up to 70+) are invited to attend a prizegiving ceremony in London every year.

The beauty of the contest is 1) it's for a good cause 2) you can do it 'in your own back yard' 3) it's for allcomers - attached/unattached, elite through to beginners.

Alex

Kevin in MD
July 18th, 2002, 03:13 PM
MOST open water swims are for some charity or another. Just like road runs or triathlons.

I think the problem with what you suggest is precisely the pool atmosphere. You don't really see a lot of charity track meets or velodrome races. Outdoor stuff in the big wide open appeals to the general public more.

KenChertoff
July 18th, 2002, 06:47 PM
My team, in cooperation with two or three (depending on the year) other clubs in New York, has been doing an annual charity pool swim event for about 12 years, based on the USMS Hour Swim.

Essentially, we collect pledges based on lengths completed during the hour, with proceeds going to a local organization (generally AIDS and/or youth related). It's been very succesful and each year we've raised more money than the last. It's also been one of our major team events and tremendous boost to team cohesiveness.

Of course, since our event is USMS sanctioned, it's open only to USMS members. We need the sanction for insurance, but I don't see why a similar "open" event could not be sponsored by an organization able to obtain coverage independently. As I recall, the Swim for the Future that Rich mentioned, which had a similar format (and which I swam in), wasn't USMS-sanctioned and was open to all. It was also tremendously successful -- I think it raised over $100,000.