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Nestled in the Waynedale neighborhood called Avalon is a hub of tradition, family and fun. The spacious Avalon Summer Sports Club pool is home to one of Fort Wayne's finest traditions: Avalon Swim and Dive Team. For nearly 50 years Avalon Swim and Dive has been providing children from ages 4-18 the opportunity to learn to swim and dive, experience the excitement of competition, and enjoy the feeling of being part of a team. Every year several families travel from around the Greater Fort Wayne area to be a part of the Avalon Swim and Dive Team tradition.

The summer swim and dive season runs for seven weeks from Memorial Day to mid-July. This year the City Swim Meet will be July 15th-17th. Over 500 swimmers compete from 14 different teams around Fort Wayne and Columbia City. Sunday's "finals" is kicked off with a "Parade of Teams" complete with costumes. Avalon Swim and Dive Team traditionally can be heard throughout the nearby neighborhoods as they noisily cheer and parade their way through town to the Natatorium.

Avalon Swim and Dive will also compete in several dual meets in June and July. They will host the annual "LeighAnn Palmer Memorial Swim Meet" on June 25 that attracts over 300 swimmers. The team also holds one week of free swimming lessons and offers a "Prep Team" for ages 4-8.

Avalon Swim and Dive Team is fun for the whole family. Parents socialize and make friends as they time, cheer, judge, and generally help out. Whole families participate in the annual after hours swim and dive team party, "spirit week" activities, "Hot Dog Wednesdays," and "Donut Saturdays".

The head swim coach at Avalon, Laura Hammes, has decades of swimming and coaching experience. She is a Level 2 ASCA certified coach and also coaches for Three Rivers Aquatic Club (TRAC). Laura puts an emphasis on having fun while teaching stroke mechanics, race strategy, and sportsmanlike conduct. Members are welcome to participate on both the swim and dive teams for one inclusive fee, and practice times are flexible. There are no "try-outs", and no one is ever turned away!

So if you are looking for quality family fun this summer, check out Avalon Summer Sports Club at http://www.avalonswim.com. Swim and Dive Team registration will be held at Avalon Missionary Church on Lower Huntington Road near Airport Expressway from 6-8 pm on April 26th (pool memberships are available).

The Waynedale News Staff
Author: The Waynedale News Staff
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