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YMCA of Central Florida Team Hosts the 10th Annual EU Swim Series

YMCA Aquatic Center, Orlando

YMCA Aquatic Center, Orlando

The entry deadline has passed, the teams have been tallied. Swimmers from 9 countries will be gathering at the YMCA of Central Florida in Orlando on September 19th-20th for the 10th annual EU Swim Series.

Headed by VP of Aquatics and Olympian Rowdy Gaines and Aquatics Director Mike Brady, the YMCA of Central Florida team is set to take the torch from 2014 Finnish hosts Simmis Hyvinkaa. Traditionally, the host club is responsible for the organization and logistics of the competition as well as the recruitment of national clubs, bringing a unique flavor and a fresh perspective to each year.

Although the event has officially taken on the name of the host club or city since the Tampere Open version of the EU Swim Series, our 2015 hosts have chosen to call this year’s competition the “EU Swim International Invitational”, marking the first time since 2011 that the EU Swim label has been used.

Mike Brady is this year's meet director

Mike Brady is this year’s meet director

In another unique turn of circumstances, this year’s competition will be one of the most international editions yet. While the EU Swim has usually been characterized by a strong national component and a healthy, yet smaller international turnout, this year’s event has produced an even number of American and international participants.

The shift in the size and international makeup of the meet has the potential to produce a more intimate atmosphere that is less focused on the pressure of the competition, placing more emphasis on friendship and cultural exploration.

The Aquatic Center is located on International Drive, home to the Orlando Eye among other attractions

The Aquatic Center is located on International Drive, home to the Orlando Eye among other attractions

The diversity of countries that are expected to be present during this year’s competition is also reflective of the competition’s mission to promote “swimmers without borders”. Athletes from the Bahamas, Curacao, the Czech Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Russia, Trinidad and Tobago and the British Virgin Islands, in addition to the United States, are expected to be on deck next weekend. With all swimmers encouraged to participate in the traditional parade of countries, the pool is sure to turn into a festive display of national pride.

Thanks to the YMCA of Central Florida for hosting this year's meet!

Thanks to the YMCA of Central Florida for hosting this year’s meet!

We would like to thank the YCF team for agreeing to organize the competition this year and we’re looking forward to this 10th anniversary! In the meantime, deck entries WILL be accepted this year, so please feel free to register yourselves or your swimmers!

For more on how the YMCA of Central Florida has prepared for this year’s competition, check out our video interview with Rowdy Gaines and Mike Brady.

See you this weekend.