The pool is packed at this time every summer.
The Nanaimo White Rapids summer swim club hosts its annual invitational meet at Bowen Park’s Kin Pool starting Friday (June 28).
Some 350 athletes will take part, including over 100 from the Nanaimo club.
“We try to make it a real fun experience over the course of the weekend,” said Gareth Saunders, coach of the White Rapids. “So we do a lot of team cheers, face paint … All their parents, all their friends come down and it’s a great atmosphere.”
Clubs from up and down Vancouver Island are taking part, as well as a North Shore Winter Club team that is expected to be highly competitive. The visiting swimmers and their families will enjoy themselves, said Russ Der, White Rapids president.
“Bowen Park is probably Nanaimo’s hidden treasure,” he said. “It’s such a wonderful place to be with all the different things – the salmon stream and amphitheatre, the trails. The setting is fantastic.”
There are likely to be some fast swims. Several White Rapids are in the midst of standout seasons including Hayley Price, Ellen Taekema, Riley Prout-Holm, Chris Yates and Owen Simpson.
“This is one of our major meets that we kind of key on and try to get swimmers swimming well at,” Saunders said.