The Haines Dolphins swim team is looking to expand next season.
“One of our goals for next year is to increase participation and at least double our numbers,” said K.C. O’Connor, Dolphins board president. “We plan on having a couple of pool parties this summer for recruitment purposes.”
About 25 children swim for the Dolphins. Their season wrap-up party was last week at Tlingit Park. The season closed with a time trial in April to record last official times. Also in April, Haley Sweet-Cushing, 10, and Rebekah Green, 16, represented the squad at the Junior Olympics in Anchorage.
Club awards were made to: Sweet-Cushing and Brennan Palmieri, best swimmers; Teya Silkman and Zander Willard, most improved; Skye Posey, best spirit; and Rebekah Green, best attendance and “Iron Dolphin.” Participants also received awards, certificates, fundraising prizes and pins from their annual Swim-a-Thon fundraiser, which raised about $15,000.
The Dolphins are advertising for a new head coach to work approximately 20 hours per week. Applications are due June 15 for the eight-month, part-time position, and additional income might be available through private lessons, a masters program and other offerings. Candidates are expected to have American Swimming Coaches Association certification. More information is available at www.hainesdolphins.org.
“The team is planning several fun days at the pool this summer and also intends to hold a pre-season clinic during which swimmers can come in for games, get to know the new coach, and give new team members a chance to see what being a Dolphin is all about,” said James Alborough, a Dolphins board member.
The squad also is seeking new board members, he said. “We have updated our bylaws to allow general community members to serve on the board, as opposed to only parents/guardians of swimmers.”
Alborough said the Dolphins ranked among the top three teams in the nation in money raised per capita in the Swim-a-Thon, with an average of nearly $650 per swimmer. The team had 23 swimmers participate in the fundraiser, down from 43 the previous year.
“The board has lots of plans to make our team strong and fun,” Alborough said. “We plan some innovative and exciting programs in an effort to introduce our program to new swimmers and to encourage greater participation in a healthy and enjoyable exercise and sports program.”