Monday, June 19, 2006

Saturday June 24th - Day of the Super Humans

Oh. my. gosh.

6/20 note - I have discovered that the press release and the course maps for the Liberty Challenge seem to be contradictory - from the press release, I thought they'd be going down the Buttermilk Channel & around the south end of Governor's Island on the outbound leg - from the course map, it looks like that's on the return leg - I'll post which it is as soon as I know for sure!

I have just figured out that June 24th should be dubbed Human Powered Day in New York Harbor.

At 6:30 am, the first wave of swimmers will set out from the Battery in the annual Manhattan Island Marathon Swim. That means all the way around Manhattan, each swimmer entirely under their own steam, no flotation devices allowed, and "marathon" is not an exagerration, the distance around Manhattan is slightly more than an actual running marathon. This is pretty darned amazing & I shall be accompanying one of those swimmers or relay teams all the way around, just as I've done for the past few years. I really enjoy this one. It's hard to estimate times but if you are by one of the 3 rivers (Hudson, Harlem or East) and you see swimmers in the water - know that they are doing something pretty remarkable & cheer them on - they can't always hear the cheers, but sometimes they do & it's just got to be nice to hear that as you are swimming along!

On the same day, New York Outrigger (who shares dock space with the kayak crew at Pier 63) will be hosting the 9th Annual Liberty Challenge, a race for Hawaiian-kine outrigger canoes. From their press release:

This years Liberty will start and end under scenic Brooklyn Bridge, with festivities in the city and state parks on the Brooklyn side of the bridge and an evening luau open to the public on the Manhattan waterfront . The race course is 16.5 miles in length, with boats and their crews of six proceeding down the East River, around Governor's Island, past the Statue of Liberty, and up the Hudson River as far as 45th Street. Viewing will be excellent both from the shore and from escort boasts and a 15 minute film on the race will be aired on TV.

An email I just got today added the following:

The women start at 7:30 am and we hope to be heading back by 9:30 am, 10:00 ish.
The men start at 11:00 and the mixed crew is early afternoon. Do come and support us. In the evening, we will be holding a Luau at the pier we keep our canoes, Pier 63 at 23rd street starting at 7;00 pm.

Should be QUITE the Saturday, huh?

Side note to all ferryboat pilots, charter boat captains & the rest of the usual harbor denizens - you might want to stock up on Advil...

Side note to anybody else - there are some pretty good pictures in the MIMS page photo link, including a few of me - yellow Romany, yellow PFD, teal rash-guard. You'll see this one too, I think this is probably the best picture I've ever taken. I took this during a rerun of the MIMS that was held for a couple of the local swimmers after last year's ended up being called off due to severe thunderstorms (I'd been accompanying Dan, the swimmer in the photo & he asked me to come back for the second try - that time, he made it). It's a little tricky taking pictures, the kayaker's got a job to do & taking pictures is too distracting to do very much, but I did manage to get a few in as we were going around & this was my hands-down favorite.

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