About 225 boys and girls recently competed in Splashdown, a friendly swim meet hosted by the Harris County Aquatics Program (HCAP).
The July 28 meet at the Harris County Aquatics Center featured swimmers ages 6-18 – some of whom recently learned how to swim in the free program offered by HCAP, which is part of the Harris County Precinct One Street Olympics.
Swimmers who finished in first, second and third place in the 50 events were awarded medals. Fourth- through eighth-place competitors received ribbons.
However, all participants in the Learn-to-Swim sessions are winners because they learn a lifesaving skill. In addition to swimming, HCAP promotes leadership and discipline.
“Precinct One provides this program because it helps children learn how to swim and learn about life,” Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis said. “If you can compete in a swim meet, even if you don’t come in first place, you have learned how to work hard and to do your best. You have learned an important life skill.”
Throughout the year, HCAP offers swimming lessons and competitive training to about 6,100 youth at the Aquatics Center and nine other sites, including Attucks Middle School, Carver High School, Davis High School, Dekaney High School, Julia C. Hester House, Kashmere High School, Lincoln Park, Nimitz High School, and Westfield High School.
Some of the students from the summer classes competed in Splashdown.
Angel Campos, 8, who has been swimming for one year at the Aquatics Center, beamed with excitement at the swim meet after receiving four medals – three first place and one second.
“I’m happy and I’m proud,” he said.
Laura Diaz, 11, who has been swimming for one year at the Julia C. Hester House site, also enjoyed the swim meet.
“I like swimming so much because there are so many more possibilities,” she said. “You can start getting into bigger competition.”