Contact: Meghan Bell
|YOUNG SWIMMERS GO FOR WORLD RECORD, THURSDAY 3 JUNE 2010 STEW
LEONARD III CHILDREN'S CHARITIES PARTNERS WITH THE NYC PARKS & REC
The World's Largest Swimming LessonTM
Swimmers at St. Mary's Recreation Center in the Bronx, located at 450 St. Ann's Avenue (between 145th Street & St. Ann's Avenue) will attempt to break the record for The World's Largest Swimming Lessonâ„¢. With support from the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation, the City of New York Parks & Recreation will host a class of 30 young swimmers who will make a splash at a special swimming lesson that was simultaneously being taught at pools around the world.
More than 175 aquatic facilities, from Walt Disney World's Typhoon Lagoon near Orlando, Florida to swim schools in Orange Country, CA to community centers in the Bronx, to locations as far reaching as Zambia, Lebanon, Dubai, and the USAG Humphreys in South Korea will participate in the program to build awareness about the vital importance of teaching children to swim to help prevent drowning.
Mascots Pearl the Squirrel and Stewie the Duck, as well as, the Leonard family will be on deck to support the participants and further the message of water safety.
STEW LEONARD III WATER SAFETY FOUNDATION
On January 1, 1989, a 21-month old toddler lost his life in a drowning accident. This sparked his parents to pledge that they would do everything in their power to prevent this tragedy from striking other families, since drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children under five. In 1990, that toddler's parents, Kim and Stew Leonard, founded the Stew Leonard III Water Safety Foundation in memory of their son. Since this time, the Foundation has raised more than $1 million dollars to go towards water safety awareness and education, including providing swim scholarships and lifeguard training, along with writing and publishing two children's books on water safety: Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim and Swimming Lessons with Stewie the Duck.
CITY OF NEW YORK PARKS & RECREATION – SWIM TO SAFETY
Swim to Safety, launched jointly by the New York City Parks Department and the New York City Department of Education, teaches 2nd and 3rd grade students the essential skills necessary to keep them safe from drowning. The program, based out of Parks' recreation centers, helps children develop a level of comfort in the water by showing them how to float, how to tread water, and introducing them to basic swim skills. Swim to Safety is offered in three, 10-week sessions throughout the school year. Parks serves more than 5,000 second- and third-grade students through this program annually, and provides each student with free annual memberships to Parks' recreation centers to encourage the youngsters to practice their skills.
Thursday, 3 June 2010 at 10:00 A.M.
St. Mary's Recreation Center â€“ 450 St. Ann's Avenue (between 145th Street and St. Ann's Avenue)
Kara Hughett, The Morris + King Company, 212.561.7424, firstname.lastname@example.org