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SwimBowen adding several exciting features to 2024 event

New event directors, team fundraising, and professional timing all coming in the months ahead
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Top 2023 fundraisers David Bellringer (left) & Michael Henrichsen (right) show off their finish line smiles at last year’s event.

Save the date! The 7th Annual SwimBowen 750 and 1500 metre swim event in Tunstall Bay is Saturday, July 13 at 10 am.

If you love to swim, this is a superb goal for ocean swimmers looking to increase their endurance, or pool swimmers looking to expand their horizons and splash out in our aquatic backyard. Beyond fitness goals, SwimBowen is our not-to-be-missed island fundraiser for Bowen Island’s Cancer Care Fund supporting island residents in active cancer treatment.

To date SwimBowen has gifted $80,800 in Cancer Care Funds to our island friends and family doing the hard work of treatment. Registration opens at midnight on April 1. Spaces fill lickety-split.

Big news! David Bellringer and Michael Henrichsen are stepping in as SwimBowen’s new event directors. These long-time islanders bring their passion for community, keen organizational skills, and a love for open water swimming (these two dudes swam around the entire island last year as part of their “just for fun, pre-event” experience).

All this comes wrapped up with a deep appreciation for the healing power of the Cancer Care Fund. Their team leadership will take this adored community event to the next new level ensuring SwimBowen will remain a legacy event and fund to be celebrated for years to come.

Founder Mary Letson will remain as Chair of the SwimBowen Society and will lurk in the wings to assist the transition to the new event directors. Mary is looking forward to spending more time building her fitness business and leaning into her swim training as she will be a participant on July 13!

We are also improving the registration options this year with the addition of teams. A great way to boost camaraderie and friendly fundraising competition, we are inviting corporate, family, and neighbourhood teams (and any other kind of team that comes to mind!) to register. Along with our other legendary fundraising prizes, the top fundraising team will also be recognized. Details coming soon!

SwimBowen is also splashing out and feeling all grown up with the introduction of professional timing for the 2024 event. Don’t worry, we are not going all “downtown”. This won’t detract from the grassroots, community feel that everyone raves about. We are however improving the entire experience for both swimmers and volunteers.

Previous events have been timed manually with volunteers at the finish line to site swimmers, call numbers and input swimmer numbers. It’s a tricky task. And not necessarily all that fun. The entire finish line organization will be hugely streamlined and de-stressed with this addition. Swim times will be available almost immediately. It’s a win-win-win for everyone.

Keen to be a SwimBowen Sponsor? Or volunteer? You can email swimbowensociety@gmail.com and let us know you would like to support the event. We can’t wait to hear from you!

With all the new additions to SwimBowen, please know that the best things about SwimBowen will remain the same. The amazing range of swimmers coming from down the road or across the country, all united in their love of ocean swimming and caring for others. It’s all of you who are the constant. You are the core of the SwimBowen joy that buoys this biggest little event in the Salish Sea.