Qualicum Beach getting ready for the 54th Ocean Mile Swim

The most venerable event in Qualicum Beach is gearing up to get one year longer as organizers prepare for this year’s Ocean Mile Swim.

Organizer Doug Taylor said this year’s swim — the 54th annual — is slated to take place on August 21 at the waterfront boat launch beside the Beach Hut.

“It’s the longest running event in Qualicum Beach, if not in all of Oceanside,” Taylor said.

The swim, Taylor added, has seven age groups and nine entry categories, 13 perpetual trophies and 14 winners’ medallions. As in past years, certificates will be available for everyone who completes the swim.

First place awards will go to first Overall District 69 Resident, First female, 13 and under, 14 to 18 years, 19 to 25, 26 to 35 years, 36 to 49 years, 50 to 64 years, 65 and over, Open, Handicapped, Most Senior and Youngest Participant.

Completing the course is no mean feat however. It takes an oval route along the beach from the boat ramp towards Memorial Avenue and back, for a total of a measured mile. However, this length may be shortened, depending on the weather and water conditions.

Fortunately, members of the Arrowsmith Search and Rescue water rescue team will be on hand to keep an eye on swimmers.

Taylor said he expects to attract about 50 swimmers to the beach, along with their family, friends and other supporters.

“About 50 is the average, although it has been down to as low as 20 and as high as 70-odd,” he said. “We won’t know until the day of the swim. That’s when we start taking registrations.”

Anyone who wants to take part in this year’s event can register starting at noon on race day, with the swimmers taking the plunge at 3 p.m.

For more information contact the Ravensong Aquatic Centre at 250-752-5014.


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