Masters Swimming is Coming to Pico!

U.S. Masters Swimming is coming to Pico Sports Center!

Killington Aquatic Club and I are so excited to announce that U.S. Masters Swimming will be coming to Pico Sports Center beginning Monday, February 23rd.  Masters is explained, in their own words, as follows:

“Masters swimming is an adult aquatic fitness program for individuals who have chosen aquatics as their means of exercise for a healthier lifestyle. U.S. Masters swimming programs do not discriminate between levels of ability or the individual goals of its members. There are many different types of swimmers. Some are highly competitive; others swim for fun or fitness. Many prefer open water events or triathlons.”

Whatever your goal is – to get in better shape, do your first triathlon, or to swim competitively – this program is here to help you achieve that goal while keeping the workouts fun and challenging.  As coach, I can’t wait to share and impart everything I’ve learned over the past few years as an active USMS member and open water marathon swimmer.

In order to participate in any class, whether just dropping in or committed to coming every time, you must be a registered USMS member, and can register by following the link below.  It doesn’t cost a lot and it insures all of us, gives you access to USMS resources, sends you a magazine, and allows you to participate in USMS events and meets.

We are starting small… but all the best things do!  Practices will be:

Mondays, 5:30pm -6:45pm

Saturdays 12:00-1:30pm

Running from February 23rd – May 23rd, 2015

We’ve worked hard to keep the cost of Masters as low as possible and offer the following rates:

Full Program Access: $300

Drop-in fee: $15.00/session

Cash or Check made out to Killington Aquatic Club

What you will get through our program, in addition to all of the USMS membership benefits, is the following:

Weekly e-newsletter

Weekly workouts

A super smart and fun coach (with red hair, even!!!)

Swimming is one of the best workouts there is – easy on your joints, good for your heart, works out your entire body.  Swimming with a group keeps you accountable to your goals and helps to keep the workouts fun and interesting.  Swimming with a coach gives you necessary feedback for improvement.

What’s not to love about all of this?!?

Register for USMS online as soon as possible and come to Pico Sports Center early on February 23rd to register for our program.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at

See you at the pool!

US Winter Swimming Championships

You’ve all asked and wondered, and now finally, here it is, folks!  The “What I’m Doing Next”.  At least, as far as swimming adventures are concerned.  Below is the press release from Newport, VT about the Winter Swimming Championships – with my personal interjections from time to time.

This was one of the bays we couldn't swim in.  The one next door only had some ice floating in it.
This was one of the bays we couldn’t swim in when we went for a training swim last weekend. The one next door only had some ice floating in it, though, so we could get in.
Swimming around Ice
Helen and I about to go for our quick swim in Boston Harbor this past Saturday! It was great!


January 11, 2015

From San Francisco to St. Petersberg, Finland to Montana, Winter Swimmers sign on to the US Winter Swimming Championships in February.

LAKE MEMPHREMAGOG, NEWPORT, VERMONT – Work begins in earnest this week to prepare for the inaugural US Winter Swimming Championships on February 21-22, 2015. (It’s the first one… how could I NOT sign up?!?!  Right in VT? C’mon!) Winter swimmers from around the nation and around the world have already begun to make plans to travel to Newport, Vermont for the 25, 50, and 100 meter championship swims. All in a 25 meter two-lane pool to be cut in the ice on Lake Memphremagog near The EastSide Restaurant in Newport, Vermont. (Yes.  A pool in the ice – both treacherous and beautiful…) Already, 25 swimmers have registered or committed to joining us. They come from Pittsburgh, San Francisco, St. Petersberg, and Boston, New York City, Vermont (I am not the only Vermonter!), Maryland, Chicago, Montana, Russia, Latvia, and Finland have already registered or committed to join this swim. Current Roster is attached along with a separate introduction to many of them. (You can go to the following article to get some insight into the kind of crazies who do this:

Every day we get new inquiries from swimmers wanting to participate. Are we excited, or what? And for local “novices” we will offer a charity “plunge” (quick in and out of the pool – do it, it will be awesome!) on Friday afternoon, February 20th to raise money for Jess Sicotte, a Derby Elementary School teacher battling cancer – to give our local residents an opportunity to experience what winter swimming is all about and to raise money for a neighbor in need. Kingdom Games, US Winter Swimming Association and Newport Parks and Recreation Department have all partnered to make this extraordinary event possible.

For more info about the swim or to register to join us, check out: (Check out this website, anyway.  It’s bizarre and extreme and fun!) Newport Parks and Recreation Department will be cutting the pool on Friday and Saturday, January 23rd and 24th. We are looking for help from local contractors and high school students to build the wood liner around the edges of the pool. We are also looking for trucks, trailers, and other equipment to move the blocks of ice from The EastSide Restaurant to Gardner Park for use in the ice maze as part of the upcoming Winterfest Celebration to be held on February 7th. Anyone interested in helping, please contact Phil White at 802-249-9100 or Andy Cappello and Jessie Booth at 802-334-6345 (Volunteers make the world go round!)

The Winter Swimming Championships are part of a full season of Winter Games on Lake Memphremagog hosted by Kingdom Games, including the North American Marathon Speed Skating Championships (1/31-2/1), The Great Skate (2/1) and Memphremagog Pond Hockey Classic (2/7-2/8). With the support of Newport City Renaissance Corporation, Newport City Inn and Suites, Little Gnesta, the City of Newport, and Dan Gauvin of Lakeview Aviation we will be maintaining the speedskating oval and a Nordic Skating Trail as long as we can this winter. (Even if you can’t make it for the swim, do something else wintry and fun!) They will be open to the public.