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.
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 SwimOutlet.com 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!
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.
As the 2018 Open Water season comes to an end, SAA National members have been at some great events around the country spreading the SAA mission. Check them out and contact us if you have an event you’d like to have featured!
Golden Goggles Award Ceremony (New York, NY – November 19, 2018)
Swim Across America’s own and Olympian Craig Beardsley represented SAA at the 2018 Golden Goggles Awards in New York. Craig along with 4-time Olympic Medalist Maya Dirado, presented the Coach of the Year Award!
World Open Water Swimming Association Conference (San Francisco, CA – November 10, 2018)
SAA’s Director of Events Megan Melgaard and San Francisco Bay Swim Co-Event Director Susan Helmrich presented “Swimming for Good” and “Why I Swim” on behalf of Swim Across America at the WOWSA Conference held at the Olympic Club in San Francisco.
Santa Barbara Pool Swim (Santa Barbara, CA – November 4, 2018)
The inaugural “SB Swims for a Cure” pool swim was held at the Los Banos del Mar Pool in Santa Barbara, California. The event doubled their fundraising goal in just it’s first year, raising over $11,400! SAA’s own Megan Melgaard and Craig Beardsley were able to attend the event and give some pointers to the swimmers! If you’re interesting in starting a pool swim contact Craig Beardsley!
This #GivingTuesday, November 27, Swim Across America is asking you to show your love for SAA by participating in one of these four fun tasks! Remember to tag #SwimAcrossAmerica and #GivingTuesday in all your social media posts!
It is with sadness that we inform you that the beloved Quinn the Leonberger passed shortly after the 2018 Dallas swim. Quinn and his handler Peggy Walker were participants and supporters of the Swim Across America – Dallas event from the beginning. Quinn not only attended each open water and pool swim, but he was also a magnet for the media which helped spread the word about the importance of phase 1 fundraising and the great work being done at the Swim Across America Innovative Clinical Trial Center at BaylorScott&White. He and Peggy were introduced to the swim through the Cancer Center where Quinn was a pet therapy dog. Both he and Peggy had been touched by cancer so their support and participation was only natural. In total, Quinn raised $27,520 for the swim making him one of the event’s largest fundraisers.
His gentle spirit was a highlight for many survivors, participants and children who were usually not expecting to see a dog the size of Quinn but automatically smiled when they realize how gentle he was.
He was surrounded by his family, at home in his living room when he left. He will be deeply missed and we thank Peggy Walker for sharing him with the Swim Across America family.
Community service is one of the best ways for college swim programs to build team chemistry and goodwill with their university. In 2018, more than 30 college programs volunteered their time by participating in a Swim Across America charity swim.
Swim Across America’s slogan is #MakingWavesToFightCancer and it does so by hosting open water charity swims. Since it’s founding in 1987, SAAs charity swim program has granted over $80 million to its mission of funding cancer research and clinical trials.
“364 days a year we compete with each other,” said Providence College head coach John O’Neill at the Swim Across America—Rhode Island charity swim. “But today, we all wear the same swim cap. We’ve all been touched by cancer and we swim in honor of survivors and those we’ve lost so that others may have hope.” John was awarded the College Swim Coaches Association of America community service award in 2016 for his support of Swim Across America.
The college programs that participated and volunteered at an SAA charity swim include Assumption College, Boston University, Bryant University, Brown University, Cal Catawba College, College of Holy Cross, Colorado School of Mines, East Carolina University, Emory, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Loyola University, Maryville University, McKendree University, Northeastern University, Penn State, Providence College, Queens University, Roger Williams University, Seattle University, SMU, St. Louis University, TCU, Truman State, Tufts University, University of California, University of Connecticut, University of Georgia, University of Idaho, University of Illinois-Chicago, University of Missouri, University of Missouri – St. Louis, University of North Texas, University of Texas, Ursuline College, Villanova and Wesleyan University.
The 2019 Swim Across America calendar will include charity swims in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Charleston-Kiawah, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Denver, Fairfield County (CT), Houston, Long Island, Nantucket, Nassau (NY), Richmond, Rhode Island, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis and Tampa.
Olympian Craig Beardsley heads up Swim Across America’s college program. He can be reached at email@example.com to learn more.