June 18, 2014

News Release

For Immediate Release

Fassnight Pool, Pat Jones YMCA hosting World's Largest Swim Lesson

The Springfield-Greene County Park Board, in partnership with the Ozarks Regional YMCA, will take part in the World's Largest Swim Lesson Friday, June 20, 10 a.m., at Fassnight Pool, 1300 S. Campbell, and the Pat Jones YMCA, 1901 E. Republic Road.

The World's Largest Swim Lesson is a nationwide coalition of waterparks, pools and aquatics programs and associations, joining together to promote water safety and drowning prevention. The coalition holds the holds the current Guinness World Record for the largest simultaneous swimming lesson, with 32,450 participants, representing 13 countries.

Friday's event in Springfield is among hundreds of concurrent swim lessons around the world attempting to break that record. Witnesses will be on site at Fassnight Pool and the Pat Jones YMCA to report results to Guinness World Records.

More than 175 kids have already signed up for the lesson at Fassnight. Marc Baker, Aquatics Coordinator for the Park Board, said the lessons are for all ages, and include safe pool entry, nose and mouth immersion, breathing techniques, floating, arm strokes, kicking strokes and a combination of these skills.

"The lessons are designed to promote water safety and serve as an introduction to swimming," said Baker. "We want to get non-swimmers in the water for a basic overview and encourage them to sign up for lessons to develop their swimming skills."

According to The World's Largest Swim Lesson, drowning remains the leading cause of unintended, injury-related death for children ages 1-5, and the second leading cause of accidental death for children under 14. Formal swimming lessons can significantly reduce the risk of drowning.

Participation in the World's Largest Swim Lesson is FREE. The half-hour lesson begins at 10 a.m. but registration is required at Fassnight Pool or Pat Jones YMCA 9-9:45 a.m.

Members of the media are invited to attend this event.

For more information, visit www.parkboard.org/aquatics/ , www.wlsl.org or call the Park Board's Aquatics Program at 417-891-1616.