Local children with a passion for competitive swimming will get a chance to learn a few pointers from a pair of U.S. Olympians this weekend.
Lacey Nymeyer and Gil Stovall, both of whom competed in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, will be the guests of honor when the Fitter & Faster Swim Tour makes a stop at the Greater Milford Boys & Girls Club’s Richard M. Johnson Aquatics Center on Sunday.
“It’s going to be awesome,” said Sarah Ziccarelli, the aquatics director at the Boys & Girls Club. “We’re the first pool in the state to host anything like this and all the kids that swim here are so excited.”
Nymeyer and Stovall will discuss their favorite drills and take questions from attendees at the event, which will run from 1 to 4 p.m.
In addition, Nymeyer will allow attendees to try on the silver medal she won in the 400-meter freestyle relay at the 2008 Olympics, while one registrant and two of their friends will receive a free, half-hour clinic with Stovall.
The event also will include a presentation of drills and demonstrations on a 100-foot screen, a question-and-answer session, a photograph session with the Olympians and more.
Ziccarelli said Nymeyer and Stovall each have backgrounds that are inspirational to young swimmers.
In addition to winning a silver medal in Beijing and a gold medal in the 2007 World Championships, Nymeyer also was named the 2009 NCAA Woman of the Year while a student at the University of Arizona. She is a 10-time NCAA champion and a 19-time NCAA All-American.
“She’s not just a good swimmer, but she’s a good student, as well,” Ziccarelli said. “We always stress to our kids that they can be good swimmers but it’s just as important that they do well in school, and she’s a great example of that.”
Stovall, meanwhile, set a NCAA record in the 200-meter butterfly and finished second in that event to gold medalist Michael Phelps during the U.S. Olympic Team Trials, despite being just 5 feet 8 inches, and 145 pounds.
“Most swimmers at that level are at least 6 feet tall,” Ziccarelli said. “He’s a great example of how you can defy expectations and accomplish great things.”
The cost to attend Sunday’s event is $75 if you register in advance at www.fitterandfaster.com or $100 at the door. Parents and coaches of participating swimmers can attend the event for free.
Participating swimmers will receive a collector’s program and a special gift bag.
“The kids are very aware of the U.S. swimming team and they are very excited for this event,” Ziccarelli said. “They aren’t the only ones. We’ve even had people signing up from New Jersey.”
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