Wild Fish Open Water Swim Festival
***Update as of 7/19 – As of today, we have closed online registration as we have just received word from our Board of Health agent that the event can not take place on August 1.
The decision has come from the state level and is out of the City’s & our hands as they’ve distinguished this type of event falls into the phase 4 category, despite the outdoor gathering guidelines set forth by the Governor in phase 3.
In accordance with the guidance for indoor and outdoor events, which can be found here, https://www.mass.gov/doc/sector-specific-workplace-safety-standards-phase-iii-step-1-for-indoor-and-outdoor-events-to/download, “Large-capacity event venues and activities organized to draw together large crowds must continue to remain closed until Phase IV. This includes venues used for group or spectator sports, entertainment, business, and cultural events including:
- Stadiums, arenas, and ballparks
- Dance floors
- Exhibition and convention halls
- Street festivals and parades and agricultural festivals
- Road races and other large, outdoor organized amateur or professional group athletic events”
Unfortunately, the swim race falls under the same category as road races and cannot be held until Phase 4 of the reopening.
If you were pre-registered please check your inbox for event communication.
Please save the date for next year: August 7, 2021.
**A note from the Race Director – As of June 12th we are moving forward in our plans to host the 2020 Wild Fish Swim. We’ve been coordinating with the state & local legislature, following their guidelines as we continue to manage our response and shift plans as new information continues to be released.
August 1, 2020
Distances: 1/2 Mile, 1 Mile and 2 Mile
9:30AM start (Registration/Packet pickup opens at 8:00am)
Collins Cove Beach, Salem, MA. (GPS 102 Webb St. Salem, MA) Collins Cove is located on Webb Street which is off Bridge Street. Follow signs to Salem Willows and you will see us. We are the cove on the left heading towards the Willows.
Early Bird: $20 through 2/29
Tier 1: $30 through 7/1
Tier 2: $40 through 7/31
*NO RACE DAY REGISTRATION THIS YEAR
Details: This annual community open water swim event typically attracts an average of 150 swimmers split between three different distances. The temperature of the water is typically about 66-68 degrees F with 2019 being an exception with temperatures closer to 60 degrees F. The swim takes place in a calm, protected cove, and is well supported with at least a dozen volunteers in kayaks/paddleboarders.
In 2020, t-shirts will be guaranteed for all participants pre-registered by July 25th. Swim caps will be provided for all swimmers.
Wave Start Times:
1/2 Mile Start: 9:30AM
2 Mile Start: 9:35AM
1 Mile Start 9:40AM
Top M/F in each swim distance.
Top 3 M/F in each age group in all swim distances: U-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70+
No Double Dipping
Wetsuit/Non-Wetsuits will be combined in the award ceremony.
Post Race Festivities: Post race Hot Breakfast catered by Every Little Breeze Catering.
$5 for non-swimmers and FREE for kids. Cold brew coffee provided by Boston Common Coffee Co. will be FREE for participants and $2 for non-swimmers.
Street parking along beach is limited, neighborhood parking, Bentley School Parking lot (25 Memorial Drive, Salem, MA).
Special Details and Information:
No floaties, fins or paddles allowed. There will be plenty of kayakers, paddleboarders, emergency boats in the water for athlete safety.
In the event there is not enough interest in any one of the distances or categories listed above, event organizers reserve the right to change/cancel or modify the category. In this case, refunds and transfers are eligible.
Distance or Category Changes: If you do change your mind about the category you pre-registered for or the distance you’d like to swim, please email firstname.lastname@example.org in advance or notify someone at race day registration. A change fee may apply.
Water Temperature Guidelines:
FINA’s Open Water Swim rules tell us that the lower limit for water temperature (measured 1 m below the surface) is 16 degrees C (60.8 F). If water temperature is lower, the event may be shortened or cancelled. This figure of 16 degree C is based on the fact that both male and female swimmers will not experience dangerous declines in body temperature in water temperatures of 16 degrees C or higher when swimming at typical open water race speeds.
- The minimum water temperature at which wetsuits are optional is 14 degrees C (57.2 degrees F)
- At temperatures less than 12 degrees C (53.6 degrees F) the swim will be cancelled.
Weather Policy: Races are held rain or shine unless we determine that race conditions are dangerous. This will be based on a prudent decision made on race weekend. If the race is cancelled there will be no refunds. In the event of inclement weather, Acts of God, or unforeseen circumstances, we reserve the right to alter, cancel or eliminate any/all portions of the race. Each athlete must accept any such risk of their entry fee paid including other amenities paid for such as t-shirts, insurance, and online administrative fees. All fees collected are used to develop and produce the event, including all race supplies, staffing, and administration.
Testimonials From Previous Participants:
This years Wild Fish Open Water Swim Festival was my first ever swim race, for that matter my first competitive athletic event ever. I want to thank you for making it such a good experience. As a beginner I really appreciated you having a half mile race distance; its great for those of us who really want to start doing open water but aren’t sure we can handle the length of most of the races. The staff was friendly and helpful from registration to the guys in the kayaks pointing toward the next buoy. I had a great time and I will definitely be back next year; hopefully to swim the mile this time.
I just wanted to congratulate YOU on a great event! I have to say, it was run seamlessly, without a hitch! What luck to get the most perfect weather day! From the awesome T-shirts, cinch sacks, great sponsorship, the breakfast and after-party (I didn’t partake, but those were terrific perks), it was a truly fun event. Ashley and your entire Event Management team, the kayakers, your fabulous DJ, and of course Steve’s impeccable MC skills helped make it the event of the year. I was chatting with some neighbors who had walked over to see what was going on & were fascinated by the accomplishments of the athletes. It was impressive how you monitored the index cards to make sure everyone got out of the water safely (a few folks snuck by without their cards!) There aren’t too many events of this nature in this area, so it was a pleasure to be able to participate. This was my 2nd year & I look forward to the next one! Great work! Thanks – LL 2013.
Thanks for putting on a terrific race. As I said yesterday, the Wild Fish was one of the best run open water swim events I’ve done…including the recent World Masters Championships in Italy. It was run like a triathlon…something most swim event organizers don’t understand or get. You guys get it…just super…and much appreciated. -LC
Hi, my name is Ali Burrow. My son and I swam in your open water swim yesterday. We had THE BEST time at your event, and really look forward to doing more of these; and specifically coming back next year to do this open water swim. It was sooooo well run, and every one of the volunteers was helpful and friendly. You really put on a great event. Thank you again!!! Ali and Tim Burrow
B & S: My sister and I attended your swim in Salem today, Diana did the 1 mile, I did the 2 mile. We have both taken part in distance open water events around the US, and abroad, as part of triathlons, and as stand alone swims. I doff my cap to you, a job very well done. 1.Most important, the Kayak support was among the best we have seen ever. They were all over that course. I know the cove is enclosed, and the waves and weather were fine, but I know how fast conditions can change, and I know how easily a dunked swimmer can get into trouble. Good job on supervising the course. 2. Venue: The cove is great. Enclosed enough to be calm for up tight swimmers, large enough to get a one mile circuit inside. Course was also well marked. 3. Registration: We were not pre registered, it went fine for us. I’m sorry we couldn’t get there soon enough to pick up shirts, maybe next year. 4. Professionalism: Nicely done for your chosen price point. No sarcasm intended here. We have seen very fancy setups, and entry fees that reflect the frills. I am convinced in light of the economy, there is a significant niche for events in your price range. I do not need timing chips and mats. I would be willing to pay for additional post race food, but it’s not that big of a deal. I would also like to comment on the disposition of all BNS staff I met. They were all friendly and welcoming. The weather was perfect. If you can take credit for that one, you’re really good at what you do. I look forward to seeing you next year. Regards, Ken Rosenstein (161)
Just want to let you know how much I enjoyed the race on Saturday. Very well run and an event that I look forward to (despite being one of the slowest swimmers of the bunch!) The tech shirt was great! Definitely one of a kind – not your average race t-shirt. Also, kudos to Engine House who supplied
additional pizza when they ran out. My only suggestion for next year is, would it be possible to have the 2 mile swimmers go in the first wave? I am a slow swimmer and had quite a few 2 milers swim into me. I get that it is all part of the race experience and expect that but some seemed annoyed that I was
slower than they were and I was in their way. So, I ask this not for myself, but for the two milers. Who knows – maybe I will join them next year! Thanks again, Karen
I just wanted to drop a line and say thanks for a great afternoon. You guys put on a great race and made my first swim race ever a memorable experience. I had a lot of fun. I hope to be back next year — maybe try the 2mi!