Saturday, January 20, 2007

Fins Swimmers to Host Event to Benefit MANNA

Vote FINS Swim Team for Philly Gay Calendar Best Sports Team
Philadelphia’s gay swim team, Fins Aquatics Club, will host its annual fundraiser “Swim for Jim! The James A. Robles Memorial One-Hour Swim” on Sunday, January 28, from 9:00am to noon, at the Friends Select School, 17th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

During the event, participants will swim as many laps as they can within a one-hour period to compete with other swimmers across the country. These results are then mailed into United States Masters Swimming (hence the national name of “Postal Swim"), with awards granted by age group and gender. The Fins have chosen to re-name their version of the fundraising event to honor the memory of the team’s recently deceased head coach Jim Robles, who was also one of the founders of the team.

Fins President Brian Cahill said, “This was one of Jim's favorite yearly events. To further honor Jim, we are expanding the event to include fun relays for non-swimmers, with music, snacks and lots of energy.” With the usual Fins flair the team has added a few fun activities and relays that less serious swimmers can choose to enter, costumes are encouraged.

This year, in honor of Robles, Fins swimmers have chosen to donate 100 percent of the money collected to MANNA (Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance). MANNA is a Philadelphia non-profit group which promotes wellness through nutrition in communities living with, affected by, and fighting HIV / AIDS, cancer and other life-threatening illness.

Fins Head Coach Jen Hensell said, “The postal swim is a way for me to promote a team I love and to raise money to help a charity that does an amazing and kind service for so many in need. Also it is a way for me to give back and thank an organization that helped a dear friend of mine in at a time that he needed most.”

Hensell, who is the coordinator of the event, said, “Fun is always a part of anything Fins related. There will be a drag relay and possibly a kiss the lifeguard booth.”

Vote FINS Swim Team for Philly Gay Calendar Best Sports Team

The Fins Aquatics Club is Philadelphia's gay and lesbian masters swim team. Our members range from swimmers who have never competed to first time competitors to national record holders. The club welcomes swimmers of all ages, skill levels, genders and orientations.
The team provides challenging, well-organized, coached work-outs. Some members focus on local, regional, national or international swimming competitions and/or triathlons. Others swim to keep fit.
When we aren't working out, we often hang out together just for fun, whether for meals after practice, bike rides, participating at Philadelphia's various gay festivals or for other special events.
The Fins Aquatics Club is affiliated with International Gay & Lesbian Aquatics and US Masters Swimming.

FINS Aquatic Club
Contacts: Brian Cahill (267) 971-7932 or

Swim for Jim! James A. Robles Memorial One-Hour Swim Fact Summary

Where: Friends Select (17th and Ben Franklin Parkway) Pool (bottom floor)
When: Sunday, January 28th, 2007 9am to Noon
What: A Fins hosted swimming fundraiser for MANNA
Why: To honor our dearly beloved swimmer and coach James A. Robles
Who: Contact Jennifer Hensell ( to participate or volunteer for the event. Brian Cahill ( for any team related questions
How: There is not cover charge but a collection jar will be available for donations during the event. All Fins and participants will have pledge forms and donations will accepted until February 28th, 2007. Raffles and games will also happen during the event as other opportunities to donate to MANNA.

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