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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Come To The Kingdom

Courtesy of Phil White, Lake Memphremagog, Vermont.

The Kingdom Swim includes a wide variety of event, from the 100-yard and ¼-mile swims in Lake Memphremagog for children up to 1-mile, 3-mile, 6-mile, 10-mile and 16-mile races for adults.

The longer events are quite popular: the 15-mile Border Buster whose course lies between Canada and the USA is limited to 20 swimmers and already has 14 entrants soon after registration opened. Similarly, the non-championship 10-mile race and the U.S. Masters Swimming Championship 10-mile race is limited to 100 swimmers where the maximum field is expected to be met.

"Each year the Kingdom Swim draws hundreds of swimmers, kayakers, friends, and family members to the shores of Lake Memphremagog in the heart of the summer here in the heart of the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont," describes creator Phil White of one of the Top 100 Open Water Swims in the World. "Over the past 8 years, swimmers have travelled from 35 different states, 5 Canadian provinces, Mexico, Great Britain, Scotland, Ireland, United Arab Emirates, and India to participate.

This is the first year that Kingdom Swim has hosted the U.S. Masters Swimming National 10 Mile Championships. We are excited to be working with USMS to offer a challenging long-course open water championship. The swim is sanctioned by USMS as well as the World Open Water Swimming Association and the Northeast Kingdom Open Water Swimming Association, a division of the Kingdom Games which now hosts 17 days of swimming year-round in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont and the Eastern Townships of Quebec.

Over 100 volunteer "yackers," "boat people," and "beach bums" help to make Kingdom Swim possible. Last year, the swim raised approximately US$2,000 to support the work of The Memphremagog Watershed Association and we are hopeful this year of increasing that level of support.

A full schedule of events is being planned around the swim, including the NEKOWSA Annual Pizza Party aboard the Northern Star on Thursday evening. Guest of honor will be Craig Dietz (aka The Limbless Waterman) who will be competing in the 6-mile swim in the Adaptive Division.

Friday includes the ceremonial laying of the buoys, Kingdom Kayak, cruises on the Northern Star, the Internationally Acclaimed Pet and Swimmers Parade on Friday evening, and the Newport Natural Swimmers and Yackers Pasta Dinner. Kingdom Aquafest will be held on Saturday in downtown Newport. And the Party at Prouty will be underway during and following the swim, with music, a picnic lunch, and BBQ dinner.

This year we will be adding a Kingdom Beer Tent featuring local products of Kingdom Brewing and Eden Ice Cider. On Sunday, many swimmers will congregate at Lake Willoughby for an informal "cool down" swim before they head home

For more information, visit Kingdom Games 2016.

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