Potomac River Swim for the Environment Celebrates Turning Twenty

Celebrate the 20th Annual Potomac River Swim for the Environment

20th Annual Potomac Swim Set for June 2, 2012 


Join environmental groups at the swim beach at Point Lookout State

Park to cheer in the swimmers who will swim 7.5 miles across the

Potomac River to raise consciousness and money for river restoration

projects. The annual Potomac River Swim for the Environment is growing

in popularity as a distance swim event. 


The June 2 event, which takes swimmers from Hull Neck, Virginia,

across the river to Point Lookout State Park in Maryland, provides a

challenging distance swim for the participants while raising

environmental awareness about the river as well as funds for Potomac

environmental groups. 


Last year, swimmers collected pledges of more than $18,000 to help

Potomac River groups, including the Potomac River Association,

Southern Maryland Sierra Club, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, the

Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin (with smaller amounts

to the Potomac Conservancy, West Virginia Rivers Coalition, Eastern

Shore Land Conservancy, Ridge Rescue, St. Mary's River Watershed Assoc.

and Friends of the Shenandoah River). 


A picnic hosted by the Sierra Club Southern Maryland Group provides an

informal forum for discussing local natural resources issues. 


Each swimmer is accompanied on the crossing by a volunteer kayaker

from the Chesapeake Paddlers Association or the Association of North

American Kayakers. Members of the Chesapeake Bay Boston Whalers Club

volunteer their boats and time as lead, escort, and tail boats for the

race, along with public safety vessels and staff provided by the U.S.

Coast Guard, Maryland Natural Resources Police, Ridge Volunteer Fire

Co., and the Ridge Rescue Squad. 


The swimmers will leave the Virginia shore, and with favorable

conditions, could begin arriving at the bathing beach at Point Lookout

State Park in about 3 hours or less. 


The swim began when distance swimmer Joe Stewart who uses distance

swimming as a way to raise cash and visibility for charitable causes,

embarked on a solo "Swim for the River's Sake," in 1993. The race began

the following year. In 2001, Stewart announced that he was taking a

break from race organizing, and handed the reins over to distance

swimmer, Cheryl Wagner. Stewart will be back as a race volunteer. 


The public is invited to attend the event, and help cheer the tired

swimmers to shore. 


To learn more about the event, or volunteer to help, 

contact swim organizer Cheryl Wagner at (202) 387-2361, 

email cherylw@crosslink.net 

or see our website: http://www.potomacriverswim.com.


As we get close to celebrating the event turning twenty, here's a link

below to some personal words about the event's history from: 


Bob, one of the original environmental heroes who keeps coming back

year after year to grill good food to feed everyone coming ashore; 


Chris, who helps to coordinate water safety support across miles and

miles of open water, currents, wind and changes in the weather; 


and Joe, who swam "for the river's sake" twenty years ago.









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