Mega Meet offers mega fun and opportunities for Flying Fish
The Daniel Island Flying Fish swim team completed another successful season, finishing second in the annual City Swim Meet – the event that culminates the season with the Lowcountry’s best swimmers showcasing their talents.
But if you ask the Lowcountry swimming community what its favorite meet is, most would include the 6-and-under Mega Meet, which is hosted by the Flying Fish at its home pool in Pierce Park.
It teaches the youngsters about competition, gives the older swimmers a sense of ownership and responsibility as they help run the meet. Usually, it’s the parents who present the medals and ribbons, herd the swimmers into the correct heats and lanes, serve as judges and timers, run the concession stand and keep everything under control. But for one day, the swimmers get to see a day in the life of a swim parent.
And it might provide a few comedic moments After all, we’re talking what can happen when 227 swimmers, age 6 and under get together.
That was the scenario in mid-July when the meet was held. The swimmers represented 16 teams in the CCAA, and the events were limited to only three events: 25-yard freestyle, 25-yard backstroke and 100 freestyle.
The meet was organized by the Flying Fish team as the swimmers aged 11-18 ran the meet and volunteered as timers, place judges and clerks of course (place swimmers in correct heat and lanes). In addition, Antoinette St. Germain and Mark Hafner were behind-the-scenes organizers of the event.
Flying Fish coach Rose Van Metre couldn’t be happier with the results and her older swimmers’ effort.
“This is the best meet of the summer,” Van Metre said. “The focus is on the youngest of the teams’ swimmers. During the regular meets, 5- and 6-year-old swimmers only compete in the 25 freestyle during the CCAA meets which is at the beginning of the meet. Many 5 and 6 year olds leave after they swim so they do not get the full energy of a swim meet. Mega Meet is a big meet and the young swimmers learn to compete and start to understand sportsmanship as they are encouraged to shake hands and say ‘good luck’ or ‘good job’ to their opponents.”
“There is so much excitement and positive energy during the meet,” Van Metre continued. “The goal is to foster a love of swimming so these kids come back with enthusiasm and swim for their teams for many years to come.”
The Flying Fish’s Ronel St. Germain was outstanding in the meet as she won the 25 free, 25 back and anchored the first-place DI freestyle relay.