Save The Bay will open registration for its 45th annual Swim fundraiser on Thursday, April 15. The nonprofit organization’s flagship fundraiser typically welcomes hundreds of swimmers to the shores of Newport and Jamestown for a two-mile, cross-bay swim in support of Save The Bay’s mission to protect and improve Narragansett Bay. Following a virtual-only event last year, swimmers and athletes have the opportunity to register for the 2021 Virtual Swim and Open—with challenges in bicycling, running, kayaking, and more—and to enter a lottery for a spot at a scaled-down, in-person Swim on July 17.
“Participants and staff alike missed the in-person Swim last year,” said Save The Bay Executive Director, Jonathan Stone. “But our virtual options presented us with an amazing opportunity to connect athletes in different disciplines with our work to protect Narragansett Bay. We’re looking forward to offering both options this year, as we celebrate the benefits of our beautiful Bay, and collectively take a small step back toward normalcy.”
Those who win a spot at the in-person event will tackle the Swim’s traditional two-mile course from the Newport Naval Base to Jamestown, R.I. on July 17. For participants registering for the Virtual Swim and Open, challenges include a 2.0-mile swim, a 0.5-mile swim, a 5K run or walk, a 25-mile ride, a 5K row, a 5.0-mile kayak and a 2.0-mile standup paddleboard.
“We have an activity for anyone who wants to take on a challenge to support Narragansett Bay,” said Save The Bay Events Manager, Leanne Danielsen. “And we’re looking forward to engaging all of our participants, whether it’s in-person on July 17, or over the course of the summer, virtually.”
“I work on the water with photography, swim all year long, and boat and kayak,” said Onne van der Wal, local photographer and 12-time Save The Bay Swim participant. “Narragansett Bay is everything. I strongly support Save The Bay’s work, and the Swim gives me a fun swim goal to work toward.”
“Our team is proud to support the Swim because we know that the event plays a huge role in Save The Bay’s efforts to protect and improve the Bay that we are all so lucky to train in and around,” said Peter Miniati, who organized event sponsor F. L. Putnam Investment Management’s team of 30 swimmers to participate in the 2020 Virtual Swim and Open. “Last year, the virtual event helped us combat the ‘COVID-19 blues,’ and we’re looking forward to participating in it again this year.”
Completed virtual challenges can be submitted to Save The Bay any time April 15-August 31, 2021. Participants are invited to be creative in their approaches to meeting their virtual event goals, and to promote and celebrate their accomplishments on social media, using #SaveTheBayOpen.
The registration fee for the 2021 Virtual Swim and Open is $25 per person, and the fundraising minimum for the virtual event is $200. For lottery winners who participate in the in-person event, an additional $25 registration fee will be applied, and the fundraising minimum will be raised to $400. Those interested in registering for or donating to the 2021 Swim are encouraged to visit www.savebay.org/swim, or to contact Leanne Danielsen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Save The Bay Swim is supported in part by the following event sponsors: MetLife, Fuss & O’Neill, F.L. Putnam Investment Management, BayCoast Bank, Sunflower Designs, WaterScents, Beta, Rhode Races & Events, and Blaeser Insurance; as well as Save The Bay’s 50th Anniversary sponsors: Sage Family Foundation, Navigant Credit Union, CVS Health, REI Co-op, F.L. Putnam Investment Management, Absolut, Amica Insurance, Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island, Moo.com, Roger Williams University, Brown University, Coast to Coast Promotional Products, Citrin Cooperman and Starkweather & Shepley.
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.
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