November 20, 2018…EDMONTON-When Swim Alberta Technical Coordinator Kevin Dennis and Performance Technical Director Steve Norris sat down to review the province’s competition structure this past spring, they discovered a gap that needed to be filled in providing meaningful competition appropriate for the age and stage of each swimmer.
Dennis and Norris, along with the Alberta Technical Program Committee (ATPC), collaborated on the creation of provincial competitions that focused on the younger, developing swimmers in the province, dubbing the meets as North and South Festival.
“The Festivals are racing opportunities with a focus on fun versus outcome,” says Dennis. “The focus is on all swimmers entered in the competition versus the event winners. Every swimmer will receive a swag bag and additionally, all swimmers who win a heat will be eligible for draw prize.”
Norris echoed Dennis on the importance of fun and engagement with the younger swimmers.
“Swim Alberta understands the importance of creating a sense of fun, connection and meaningful competitive opportunities for the age of swimmer the festivals have been designed for with the goal to keep these athletes engaged and excited about what they can do next in the sport of swimming”.
The Festivals are the newest additions to Swim Alberta competitions, and will concentrate specifically on females age 10 & under and males age 11 & under in order to provide provincial competition exposure for swimmers at this age. The competition will include time final events of 50 and 100 meters over two days. Additionally, one heats and finals event per day, with six finals per gender, will provide exposure to finals racing for many of the development swimmers in Alberta.
As part of the weekend festivities, several of Alberta’s top performance development swimmers will be on hand for a meet and greet opportunity for our development level swimmers to meet some of our province’s Olympic hopefuls.
Attending the South Festival will be Cole Pratt of Cascade Swim Club and Finlay Knox of the Okotoks Mavericks Swim Club. This past summer Pratt earned a bronze medal in the 200 backstroke at the Junior Pan Pacific Championships in Fiji, while Knox grabbed Canada’s first swimming medal (bronze) of the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Argentina. Pratt and Knox will be on deck from 3:00- 5:30 p.m. on Saturday.
Emma O’Croinin of Edmonton Keyano Swim Club and Avery Wiseman of Olympian Swim Club will be on site at the North Festival. Both O’Croinin and Wiseman medalled at the Junior Pan Pacific Championships, O’Croinin with the bronze in the 1500 freestyle and Wiseman grabbing bronze in the 100 breaststroke. O’Croinin and Wiseman will be available for autographs at Kinsman Sports Centre on Saturday December 1st from noon -2:00 p.m.
Swim Alberta will officially launch their first Festival meet this weekend, November 24 and 25th in Cochrane, Alberta, at the state-of-the-art Spray Lake Sawmills Sports Centre pool followed by the North Festival meet on Dec 1-2nd at Kinsmen Sports Centre in Edmonton.
For more information on the North and South Festival meets, including psych sheets and session reports, can be found below:
About Swim Alberta:
Swim Alberta is the provincial governing body for competitive swimming in Alberta. The Swim Alberta vision is “Every swimmer had the opportunity to reach their full potential” and the mission is: “ Govern, lead and support competitive swimming.” Swim Alberta has over 10,000 registered swimmer members including competitive, non-competitive, varsity, masters and summer; and over 650 registered coaches.
For information related to the festival competitions:
For information related to Swim Alberta: