Friday, September 11, 2015

It's PTown's 28th Annual Swim for Life!

The 28th annual Swim for Life is this Saturday, September 12th, 2015
Some 400 swimmers will take the plunge at 11:00 tomorrow morning, swimming 1.4 miles across magnificent Provincetown Harbor from Long Point to the beach at the Boatslip Resort in PTown's West End. Paddlers in kayaks and canoes will begin making their way across the harbor as well, while others in swimming pools will begin swimming laps equivalent to the distance across the harbor.
All of these folks have taken pledges, and will be raising money for local organizations that assist people living with HIV and AIDS, as well as women with chronic and life threatening illnesses, and a number of other community agencies serving Provincetown and Cape Cod. The first Swim for Life, in the summer of 1988, involved 18 swimmers, raising $6,000. To date, The Swim has raised some $3 million for health and wellness services on the Outer Cape.
Jay Critchley and Roger Beatty register two
unknown swimmers at the first Swim for Life in 1988.
The event evolved over the years to include people who are "harborly challenged" but who still want to participate, doing so by swimming laps in local pools, while folks in kayaks paddle across the harbor, guiding and assisting swimmers, if needed. Swimmers are aided and looked after by myriad volunteers ensuring their safety and wellbeing during the event, with others working at dozens of jobs that pull this huge event together.
150 volunteers perform countless tasks like registering swimmers, transporting them to Long Point, providing moral support, giving first aid, cheering on swimmers as they near the finish line, serving food at the Mermaid Brunch, and providing splendid entertainment for the swimmers and supporters alike, both at the party after the swim and at the Celebration of Life at the U. U. Meetinghouse on the Friday night before The Swim.
It's not too late to get involved yourself, whether you'd like to swim, volunteer, make a pledge or contribution, or cheer on the swimmers as they near the finish line at the Boatslip. On Saturday you'll want to applaud and cheer for the swimmers and paddlers as they reach the shore, then enjoy the food and entertainment at the Mermaid Brunch, and the awards for swimmers, paddlers, fundraisers and volunteers.
The annual Celebration of Life concert on Friday night kicks off The Swim.
You'll certainly want to attend the annual Celebration of Life, considered by many to be the concert of the year, tonight, at the Universalist Unitarian Meeting House, at 236 Commercial Street.
This wonderful, free event brings dozens of performers to entertain and inspire us with music, song and the spoken word.
I'll see you at the
U. U. tonight at 8 PM, and at the Boatslip tomorrow, at 161 Commercial Street, to cheer on the swimmers who begin their odyssey out on Long Point at 11AM, followed by the Mermaid Brunch on the Boatslip deck from noon till 2 PM, with the awards, beginning about 1 PM, or whenever the last swimmer makes it safely to the shore. All events are free of charge and open to the public. Come and join us!

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