Today, Save The Bay announced that it has opened registration for its annual Save The Bay Swim fundraiser.
The Swim traditionally invites swimmers to tackle a two-mile, open-water swim from Newport to Jamestown, R.I. in support of Save The Bay’s mission to protect and improve Narragansett Bay.
This year, following statewide event guidelines for Summer 2020, the Swim will be transformed into a virtual challenge. Save The Bay invites participants to register for a remote swim at the traditional distance of two miles, while also offering the option to register for a half-mile swim, or a number of other physical challenges.
“We hoped that we could hold the Swim, originally slated for July 11, in-person, later this summer,” explained Save The Bay Executive Director Jonathan Stone in a press release announcing the swim. “But when we heard the Gov. Raimondo’s updated guidance last Wednesday, we had to confront the reality that holding the event as we typically do—with hundreds of committed swimmers, kayakers and volunteers—would not be possible. We’re excited, however, to find a way to continue the tradition of connecting the community to the Bay with our virtual event this summer.”
While swimmers will have the option to register for either a “Classic Course” or “Short Course” remote event, athletes in other outdoor sports will also have the chance to participate in this year’s fundraiser. Save The Bay is offering opportunities to kayak, stand-up paddle board, row, run or bike in support of Save The Bay.
“With gyms, public pools and other preferred training areas closed, we expanded the opportunities to join this year’s Swim to anyone interested in taking on a challenge for a cause this summer,” said Leanne Danielsen, Save The Bay’s events manager in the press release. “We invite everyone to exercise their right to a clean and healthy Bay by selecting the challenge—or challenges—that interest them.”
“Since we can’t gather to show our common support for the Bay, I will be doing my part by participating in the virtual Save They Bay Swim privately,” said longtime Swim participant, Dan Force in a statement. “I enjoy contributing to Save The Bay’s efforts. It’s about being part of something larger than yourself.”
Completed challenges can be submitted to Save The Bay any time now-August 31, 2020. Participants are invited to be creative in their approaches to meeting their event goals, and to promote and celebrate their accomplishments on social media, using #SaveTheBayOpen and #SaveTheBaySwim.
“We’re looking forward to seeing the ways participants will tackle their virtual challenges this summer,” said Danielsen. “Whether they jog up and down their driveway or paddle in a pool, the effort counts—and we can’t wait to see and share the updates!”
In honor of the organization’s 50th anniversary, registration fees for the virtual Swim have been reduced by 50 percent, and signing up for the Swim or any of the optional activities will only cost $25. Participants are welcome to register for multiple activities.
As one of the most storied open-water events in the country, the traditional Swim attracts more than 300 swimmers from across the country, as well as more than 150 local volunteers, every year. The event is Save The Bay’s largest annual fundraiser, providing critical support to the organization’s mission to protect and improve Narragansett Bay and its watershed.
“The Swim, which began as a call to action for the entire Bay community, continues to remind us all of the benefit and importance of clean local waters,” said Stone, also a Swim participant. “This year, the fundraiser celebrates the value of a healthy and beautiful Bay more than ever, as so many of us are rediscovering outdoor activities during these uncertain and changing times.”
Save The Bays writes that “additional support for the Save The Bay Swim comes from our 50th anniversary and 2020 event sponsors: Sage Family Foundation; Navigant Credit Union; CVS Health; REI Co-op; F.L. Putnam Investment Management Company; Absolut; Amica Insurance; Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island; Moo.com; Roger Williams University; Brown University; Coast-to-Coast Promotional Products; F.L. Putnam Investment Management Company; UNFI; Bank of America; National Grid; Rhode Races & Events; Rexel Energy Solutions; Conanicut Marine Services, Inc.; BayCoast Bank; Hallman’s Septic and Portable Toilets, LLC; Green Energy Consumers Alliance; Regency Plaza / Chestnut Hill; and CASE Construction”.