This is the third reincarnation of this event. Each year, a community of athletes come together to raise awareness and funds to help protect Lake Erie. Our 2020 route spans 50 km of shoreline and will take place in the Western Basin of Lake Erie. The challenge is scheduled for August 22nd this year with a backup weather date of August 29th.
This year’s will consist of 3 teams of trained athletes: #TeamSUP, #TeamSwim, and - new this year - #TeamKayak! Each team will travel their share of the 50km stretch of Lake Erie coastline between the mouth of the Detroit River and Point Pelee:
#TeamSUP will travel 20 km from the mouth of the Detroit River in Amherstburg to Colchester.
#TeamSwim will hustle 13km from Colchester to Kingsville.
#TeamKayak will paddle 20 km along the shore from Kingsville to Leamington.
This year, our athletes put in extra effort to train hard for this event during a global pandemic. As COVID has shut down many pool facilities, water access, and gyms, the athletes have had to improvise to ensure they will be ready to complete the challenge!
All our athletes had trouble finding access to the water this year. With pools being closed, the swimmers waited until lakes were warm enough to train in. Athletes have had to adjust their training schedules and incorporate/develop at-home workout routines to prepare their bodies for the challenge. Some members of #TeamSwim chose to split their portion of the race up, with two swimmers completing a 5km relay within the total 14km. They will swim their relay alongside team members attempting the entire distance. Our athletes are all very determined to compete for the cause and raise awareness for the threats that Lake Erie is facing!
Lake Erie isn't only a great lake—it's a big lake. There are hundreds of thousands of people who live in the Lake Erie watershed, on the Canadian side alone. That means, in order to defend our lake from threats, it's going to take a village. It's going to take a lot of villages, actually. We need to involve as many people as possible in action to protect the lake.
The Lake Erie Challenge isn’t just about raising awareness of what Lake Erie needs—it’s a celebration of what Lake Erie has! That is, vibrant shoreline communities that appreciate and love the lake for all of its natural splendor and beauty.
Take the plunge and support our athletes in making a difference! A 50 km route is no small feat. Show your support for our amazing athletes who have been training hard during the pandemic! Please donate to the cause!
Help us ensure that local governments uphold their commitments to reduce toxic algal blooms;advance community-level best practices on pollution prevention; and deepen environmental stewardship across area businesses, municipalities and households… all while building a stronger, more unified freshwater community.