SAA Family Tree is a monthly focus on stories that display the impact all the members of the Swim Across America family have both locally and nationally. If you have a story or link you’d like to share, please send here.


SAA – Baltimore

SAA – St. Louis

SAA – Houston

SAA – Atlanta



The SAA – SwimOutlet Contest is Back in 2019!

Back again this year, we have partnered with SwimOutlet for a social media photo contest for all of our open water swims! All summer, we’re offering an exciting opportunity to show your love for SAA and win a $100 gift card. Enter by tagging @saaswim and @swimoutlet in your photo from your swim and we’ll pick the best one. Grab your friends and family and show us the best the SAA community has to offer!



Clear Channel Outdoor and Swim Across America Teaming Up

Clear Channel Outdoor is teaming up with Swim Across America with a #MakingWavesToFightCancer public service campaign that will see SAA digital messaging in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, New York City, Tampa, and San Francisco. The PSA messaging will run in each community two weeks leading up to the charity swims in those communities.


In New York City, Swim Across America messaging will run July 16th through August 4th on two of Clear Channel Outdoor Times Square digital billboards.

In addition to the public service messaging, Clear Channel Outdoor local offices will be volunteering at SAA charity swims in their communities through Clear Channel Spirit Days.

“Giving back is part of the Clear Channel Outdoor culture,” commented Gene Leehan, Executive Vice President and Senior Regional President, Clear Channel Outdoor. “Everyone has been or knows someone affected by cancer. Clear Channel Outdoor and our employees are honored to be part of Swim Across America’s charity program that gives hope and inspiration to those fighting this horrible disease.”

“Each of our charity swims has a sense of charm and community with a local beneficiary,” commented Rob Butcher, Swim Across America CEO. “Much appreciation to Clear Channel Outdoor for providing a platform that the Swim Across America name, cause and impact will be messaged nationally.”

Clear Channel..png


SAA Debuts WaveMaker Swag Bag for 2019

Swim Across America is excited to celebrate our 32nd year with a Swim Across America WaveMaker Swag Bag that includes three exclusive SAA – branded items!

As part of the WaveMaker club, we want you to show your SAA pride year-round. The official 2019 WaveMaker Swag Bag offers a branded cinch bag with zipper, a 16-ounce flexible Silipint 16 oz silicone glass and a custom BOCO Gear trucker hat. Want to take these awesome items home with you? Register today and set your fundraising goal to WaveMaker!


Highlights of the swag bag include:

  • Cinched drawstring bag with zipper compartment for extra storage and functionality.
  • Eco-friendly, reusable and unbreakable silicone pint glass with unique tie-dye design from Silipint. Great to use on a pool deck, beach or any outdoor
  • A customized BOCO Gear Trucker Hat perfect for your outdoor training and adventures.


“Hope Has No Finish Line” – Honoring ‘Amazing’ Grace Bunke

March 25th is the one year passing of ‘Amazing’ Grace Bunke. She inspired us with her bravery throughout her battle with terminal cancer. And Swim Across America is honoring Grace by sharing her message “Hope Has No Finish Line” at all our charity swims in 2019.

Grace’s home was SAA—Atlanta. She was treated for osteosarcoma at the beneficiary Aflac Cancer & Blood Disorders Center at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Grace’s wish was to be the #1 fundraiser and challenged our community to continue raising funds, so doctors can give hope to families affected by cancer. In 2018, Grace individually raised $119, 579 making her the #1 fundraiser for SAA.

Grace’s legacy of inspiring and giving hope to others continues through Team Grace. You can read more about Grace and donate in her memory here.


SAA Partner Orca Announces 2019 Fundraising Prize for All Open Water Swims


SAA Partner Orca is supporting Swim Across America in 2019 by rewarding the best early fundraiser at every swim in 2019 with an Orca wetsuit! The top early bird fundraiser determined by each swim will have the choice of an Orca wetsuit or Orca gift package as shown below. Step up the early fundraising and stay tuned to your swim to learn how to win!

You can further support Orca and Swim Across America by using the code SAAPARTICIPANT10 to get 10% off at and also support SAA!

Check out the the wetsuits or gift package items below and get started fundraising!



IMG_8156Swim Across America is excited to announce that the Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina will be the official beneficiary of its Charleston-Kiawah Island Open Water Charity Swim held annually at Kiawah Island Golf Resort.

“As an organization, one of our main goals is to have all funds raised at our events granted to local beneficiaries,” said Swim Across America CEO Rob Butcher. “Partnering with a local cancer research program with a great national reputation such as the Hollings Cancer Center will create a tangible impact in the greater Charleston area as well as bring excitement to our Charleston-Kiawah swim community.”

Swimming enthusiasts, including Olympians, kayakers and volunteers will take part in Swim Across America’s 3rd annual Charleston-Kiawah Island Open Water Swim on Sunday, August 4th, 2019.

“This last year Hollings Cancer Center has made several milestone scientific discoveries,” said Gustavo Leone, Ph.D. Director of Hollings Cancer Center. “The SAA community will help us move these discoveries into impactful clinical trials that will change the conversation about cancer. Engaging the community to bring solutions to fight and eradicate this terrible disease is simply a good thing. We are looking forward to the 2019 event on Kiawah Island.”


Swim Across Americais a national non-profit that runs swimming-related events throughout the country to support cancer research at the most highly recognized hospitals and institutions. To date, more than $80 million has been raised nationwide over the last 32 years and more than 100 Olympians have participated in SAA events. For more information, visit

The Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina is a National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center and the largest academic-based cancer research program in South Carolina. The cancer center is comprised of more than 120 faculty cancer scientists with a research funding portfolio of $44 million and a dedication to reducing the cancer burden in South Carolina. Hollings offers state-of-the-art diagnostic capabilities, therapies and surgical techniques within multidisciplinary clinics that include surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation therapists, radiologists, pathologists, psychologists and other specialists equipped for the full range of cancer care, including more than 200 clinical trials. For more information, please visit