A residential pool builder has initiated a campaign to establish International Swim Day.
In a lightning-quick, 10-day campaign, David Penton headed the charge to start a GoFundMe page and create marketing materials for the day of recognition, which he plans to occur annually on the first day of summer, June 21.
As the CEO of Fluid Dynamics Pool and Spa in Fullerton, Calif. explained in one of his first communications to colleagues: “Today happens to be National Corn-On-The-Cob day... There is no formal holiday dedicated to swimming though. Yes, there is National Learn to Swim Day, but nothing simply about the joy of swimming.”
He explained to Aquatics International that the inspiration came from another sport. “My son and I surf all the time, and about 10 years ago, the surfing community launched International Surfing Day,” he said. “I was just reading something about that and said, ‘Hey, when’s International Swim Day?’”
While International Learn to Swim Day serves a crucial purpose, Penton hopes to annually commemorate the joys of swimming, whether in a pool, lake or other venue. The GoFundMe page has a goal of raising $5,000, which has nearly been met. These donations have gone toward initiating social media campaigns, creating videos, securing a website url and, in the future, funding development of the site. So far, Olympic Gold Medalist Kaitlin Sandeno has engaged, promoting the day to her Instagram followers.
Penton even hopes to make an appearance on Good Morning America to create awareness.
Any donations over the $5,000 budgeted for creating and promoting International Swim Day will be given to the National Drowning Prevention Alliance.
To celebrate, organizers are asking swimming enthusiasts to post pictures and videos of themselves and loved ones swimming.
In future iterations of the special day, when Penton and the team have had more time to plan and organize, they expect to use the day to not only promote the fun of swimming, but also the health benefits and swimming safety. They hope the effort crosses industries, having already collaborated with a prominent SCUBA organization.
In addition, he hopes the day helps increase pool ownership.
“Who buys swimming pools? Swimmers buy swimming pools,” he said. “If you don’t know how to swim, you’re probably not going to buy a swimming pool.”
To connect with the effort, go to the International Swim Day Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/International.Swim.Day/