Victoria ultra-marathon swimmer challenged Victoria councillors to a swim in the ocean on Dec. 1 but said no members of council have taken up the challenge. (Photo courtesy of Corey Teramura)

Ocean swim challenge in support of Crystal Pool ‘rejected’ by Victoria councillors

Ultra-marathon swimmer still plans on swimming in ocean on Sunday

A Victoria marathon swimmer who has challenged Victoria councillors to a long-distance swim in the ocean said the challenge has been rejected.

Susan Simmons, an ultra-marathon swimmer known for open water swims in Greater Victoria and for overcoming multiple sclerosis (MS), made a request to councillors to join her on Dec. 1 at Ogden Point for a dip in the ocean. The goal was to show them what swimmers will have to do if Crystal Pool shuts down or is made smaller.

Reports on the aging Crystal Pool say its systems are degrading. Victoria Council has changed its mind several times on the design and location of the replacement pool, losing funding in the process.

READ ALSO: Ocean swim challenge shines spotlight on Crystal Pool plight

“Now council is once again talking about the size of the pool, suggesting that they may go back to considering a 25-metre tank,” said a statement from Susan Simmons. “A 25-metre pool means that half of the patrons of the pool will have nowhere to go except the ocean if they wish to swim to stay healthy.”

The statement also said no member of Victoria City Council has taken up Simmons’ challenge to join her at Ogden Point.

“Councillors Jeremy Loveday and Sarah Potts have rescinded their offer to join me, while Councillors Geoff Young, Marianne Alto and Mayor Lisa Helps have declined,” Simmons said. “Councillors Ben Isitt, Sharmarke Dubow and Charlayne Thornton-Joe haven’t responded, and a second invitation was sent to them this week.”

READ ALSO: Victoria city staff start from square one on Crystal Pool project

While Simmons said she is disappointed, she still plans on swimming in the ocean on Sunday and is hoping community members will join her to show their support for the pool.

Simmons will be at Ogden Point on Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. to take a plunge into the ocean for the community pool.

“We need to come together as a community,” Simmons said. “It’s our pool.”

shalu.mehta@blackpress.ca


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Polls close at 8 p.m. in the Esquimalt-Metchosin riding. (Katherine Engqvist/News Staff)
VIDEO: Esquimalt-Metchosin candidates reflect on campaign as polls close

An estimated 12,000 mail-in ballots were requested in the Esquimalt-Metchosin riding

Barb Wright and Cynthia Vance at the District Electoral Office for the Langford-Juan de Fuca (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
Polls now closed in Langford-Juan de Fuca

An estimated 12,120 mail-in ballots were requested in the Langford-Juan de Fuca riding

Drive up voting is popular with Victoria-Swan Lake voters at the Craigflower elementary polling station. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Drive up voting popular at Craigflower polling station in Victoria-Swan Lake

Nearly 13,000 mail-in ballots were requested in the Victoria-Swan Lake riding

Oak Bay High voting station was slow and steady for the provincial election day, Oct. 24, 2020. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
Early voting reduces election day turnout in Oak Bay-Gordon Head

An estimated 15,918 mail-in ballots requested in Oak Bay-Gordon Head

This was the line-up outside Sidney’s Mary Winspear Centre at around 2:30 p.m. Saturday. The short-up line speaks to the high number of votes, which have already been cast against the backdrop of COVID-19 by mail or in advanced voting. Voters, however, unanimously praised the safety measures in place, as well the convenience of the polling stations. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
‘Slow’ turnout at polls across Saanich North and the Islands

Peter Mason, district electoral officer, expects about 10,000 ballots to be cast

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Oct. 20

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Parksville’s Jared Huggan won $75,000 playing BC/49. (BCLC/Photo submitted)
Vancouver Island man $75K richer after purchasing winning lottery ticket at Nanaimo Walmart

Parksville’s Huggan plans to purchase electric bike for partner

Most Read