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Black History Invitational Swim Meet


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Guest DC Government Worker

The DC Department of Parks and Recreation will join the Black United Fund to host the 22nd Annual Black History Invitational Swim Meet. More than 700 competitors from across the country will attend what USA Swimming calls the “premier minority swim competition in the United States and in the world.

 

The Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) today announced that it will once again join with the Black United Fund to host the 22nd Annual Black History Invitational Swim Meet. “Be the Water” is the theme of this year’s event, which will be held on Saturday, February 16 and Sunday, February 17 at DPR’s Takoma Aquatics Facility, 300 Van Buren Street, NW.

 

“The Black History Invitational Swim Meet is Mayor Fenty’s vision in action, showing everyone that the District is a world-class city,” said Clark E. Ray, director of DPR. “The competition is one of our agency’s signature events and its continuing success demonstrates DPR’s commitment to youth development and our goal of bringing our residents and visitors the best in leisure programming and urban recreation.”

 

Hailed by USA Swimming as the “premier minority swim competition in the United States and in the World,” the two-day annual event attracts over 700 minority competitors, ages 5–18, from swim teams in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Detroit, Cleveland, New York and other metropolitan areas in the United States. The free event is separated into three sessions: Session I kicks off at 6 am for ages 13–18; Session II at 10:30 am for ages 8 years old and under; and Session III at 2:30 pm for ages 9–12 years old.

 

Bradford Tatum, an 86-year-old native Washingtonian and award-winning member of the Water Wizards, DC’s seniors’ swim team, will be honored by DPR and USA Swimming, the national governing body for the sport of swimming, for his contributions to the sport in a brief ceremony on Saturday, February 16, directly preceding Session II.

 

“It is a surprise and an honor that the Department of Parks and Recreation would choose to recognize me and my accomplishments in this fashion,” said Tatum. “I swim for pleasure and for exercise and this acknowledgement comes as a complete surprise.” Among Tatum’s accomplishments: gold medals in the 100- and 200-yard freestyle as well as silver medals in the 50- and 100-yard breast stroke and a bronze in the 50-yard freestyle at last summer’s national Summer Senior Olympics.

 

For more information about this historic annual event held in the District of Columbia or the programs and services offered by DPR’s Aquatics Division, the public is invited to contact (202) 671-0335

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