Kids jump into the World's Largest Swim Lesson despite the chilly weather
ALLENTOWN, Pa - Although it felt more like spring than a late-June morning in the Lehigh Valley, swimmers still took the plunge to participate in the World’s Largest Swim Lesson, Thursday.
"The kids wanted to do swimming lessons for a while, so I'm like, ‘well, I might as well take a chance and see how it goes’,” said Sabenlly Herndez of Allentown who took her three children to participate in the free swim lesson at Cedar Beach Pool in Allentown.
"It's better for them to be cognitive of how to swim and what to do if they go too deep. If they don't know what they're doing it's a hazard for them and for me as well,” she added.
This is the first year the city participated in the event, offering four free sessions throughout the day at Cedar Beach, both in the morning and evening.
Alessandri Figueroa, a lifeguard instructor at Cedar Beach talked about what children can learn during the half-hour swim class.
"They're just going to practice basic skills like floating, trying to see if they can swim, front crawl and just some survival skills to help them in case they do fall into a situation,” Figueroa said.
Figueroa added that although they didn’t have a great turnout for the free lessons because of the weather, they do offer swim lessons throughout the summer season.
- Pools around the Lehigh Valley participated in the World's Largest Swim Lesson with free sessions Thursday
- Kids jumped in the wave pool at Dorney Park for an hour-long session in the morning
- Cedar Beach Pool in Allentown offered 4 half-hour time slots throughout the day
Meanwhile, about a dozen swimmers jumped into the wave pool at Dorney Park’s Wildwater Kingdom to learn the basics of water safety.
“My kids just love swimming and it would be awesome to have a fun swimming lesson and their friends are here,” said Aubree Graver, of Auburn, Schuylkill County. The mom-of-two signed her children up for the free lesson at the theme park.
“I think everybody should learn how to swim. It's a really good skill to have in for fun and in an emergency,” said Graver. as her children braved the brisk air and got in the pool for Dorney’s hour-long session.
This is the second year Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom participated in the World’s Largest Swim Lesson event.
“There are opportunities out there for everybody to get in the water, get comfortable."Ryan Eldridge, Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom
“I think it's really important that folks do this, that they they practice water safety, that they talk to their kids about it,” said Ryan Eldridge, public relations and communications manager at Dorney Park. “There are opportunities out there for everybody to get in the water, get comfortable, reach out to maybe your local pool, see if they offer lessons and just make sure that your children are comfortable.”
Those who participated at that location were able to enjoy free admission to the park for the day and a parent or guardian was offered a discounted ticket.
The event is held each year to teach kids the importance of water safety. It was started by the World Waterpark Association in 2010. Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death among children ages 1-4 years old and the second is for kids aged 5-14.