The Kinsmen Flying Fins are ready for their final meet of the season.
Kendal Paulson from the Moose Jaw Kinsmen Flying Fins competes in the 200m free at the Mike Mintenko Summerfest meet last year at the Phyllis Dewar pool. Times-Herald file photo
There will be over 280 swimmers from 11 different clubs across the province to compete at the Mike Mintenko Summer Fest meet this weekend, which is in its 48th year.
“We are really excited to host this event,” said Gord Shields, coach of the Fins. “”I think there is going to be some really good swimming.”
This year, the format has been changed to include heats and finals. On Saturday morning, there are preliminary sessions and finals held in the evening. On Sunday, there will be more competitive finals and trial events.
“I think this became a little more appealing and that is one reason we have more swimmers attending,” said Shields.
The event begins on Saturday at 9 a.m. and runs until 3 p.m. with finals then going from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. On Sunday, the event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Fifty members of the Fins will be competing in the meet on Saturday and Sunday at the Natatorium.
“We have a lot of younger swimmers and this meet is the last meet for a lot of them. The next event is provincial and national qualification meets and time trials. This the final meet for those younger swimmers that don’t have time trails,” said Shields. “They will be really excited to race fast and try to get those time standards. This is their last chance to get those standards. There will be some really good racing and competition.”
There are some issues with the outdoor pool, including that it is losing water at an unacceptable level.
As far as Shields knows, the meet is still a go, although having this issue can cause some concerns this weekend with that many competitors coming and in the pool.
“The only concern will be the water levels. They will have to continually add water to the pool,” stated Shields. “That is a concern because the water in the shallow end is so shallow anyways. We need that water high enough so that the swimmers won’t be hitting the bottom of the pool when they do their turns in the shallow end.”
Shields did say that this meet is very successful not only for the club, but also the city.
“There are 280 swimmers in town and that means that over 200 families will be in town where they are spending $800 to $1,000 over the weekend,” he said. “We should be bringing in $180,000 to $200,000 for the city. It is good for the club and good for the city.”