Lightning Flash 8/28/17: Setbacks, Perseverance, and an Unconventional Swim Team

For those following the developments for Lowcountry Lightning, we write to update you on our efforts to start the team this fall, describe our short term plans, and elaborate on our longer term plans.

Setbacks, 10/9/17 Update

Below is the latest in facility rental news:

  • St. Andrews Family Fitness Plus: will no longer rent to swim teams.

  • City of North Charleston (Danny Jones Pool): agreed to rent, then rejected our proposal, then agreed to grant access, then rejected a second proposal.

  • City of Charleston (WL Stephens Pool, MLK Pool, Herbert Hasell Pool, James Island Pool): will not rent to outside groups.

  • City of Goose Creek (Crowfield Pool): awaiting response. UPDATE: no year round facilities.

  • Town of Daniel Island (Pierce Park Pool): will not convert to year round operation, and will not rent to outside groups. UPDATE: Daniel Island has agreed to convert to year round operation and will rent all available space to Swim Charleston.

  • Town of Mount Pleasant (RL Jones Pool, Park West Pool): exclusively rents to South Carolina Swim Club.

  • Summerville YMCA: no response.

  • MUSC Wellness Center: will not rent to youth programs not run by MUSC.

  • Citadel Pool: pool unavailable to outside groups.

  • Ashley Hall School: pool unavailable to outside groups.

  • LTP Pool: pool unavailable to outside groups.

  • I'On Club: pool unavailable to outside groups. UPDATE: I'On Club has agreed to rent pool space to Swim Charleston.

  • Longpoint Club: no response.

  • Dunes West Club: will not convert to year round operation.

  • Hobcaw Yacht Club: briefly rented to Lowcountry Lightning, but pool closes for fall and winter on 10/14/17.

  • Wild Dunes Club: will not rent to outside teams. UPDATE: Wild Dunes has agreed to rent all available pool space to Swim Charleston.

Moving Forward, 10/9/17 Update

We continue to look for suitable indoor or outdoor space for our own facility. While we have no news, we reiterate our estimate that we will have a facility sited and installed within the next 3-6 months. We pursue all leads and we welcome any suggestions or contacts.

One possible solution for the short term is to organize all our swimmers into a non-conventional morning practice routine. Roughly, both Lunch Bolts and our conventionally schooled kids would practice at a facility in the morning before any school starts.

This is feasible. During my freshman year of high school I trained on a team of ~80 swimmers across all age groups, and all our practices were in the morning before school. Yes, even 10 and unders did it! We are discussing this practice schedule with several facilities and we hope to come to agreement soon.

This Is Who We Are, 10/9/17 Update

Last week I spoke to our swimmers about our struggles to obtain long term pool space. While understandably upset, I reminded them that we are playing an "infinite game" and therefore should not be troubled by short-term setbacks. Stay tuned for a post about this.

Courtney Faller