The Summerland Orca Swim Club has more participants than ever before this year. Last week, 27 new swimmers were registered for the swim club, bringing this year’s total to more than 90.
“All of our development groups are at capacity,” said swim club coach Joanne Malar. She said the higher registration this year is in part a result of the 2012 Olympics which were held in London earlier this year.
“After the Olympics, there’s always a boom in swim members,” she said. “I think everyone gets excited about sports.”
Because of the higher number of swimmers, the club now has waiting lists. The youngest swimmers are five years old and the oldest are 17.
Although the programs are full, Malar encourages parents of young swimmers to register their children, in case a position becomes available.
The Orca Swim Club has had some strong swimmers in the past and Malar expects two of the swimmers to excel this year.
Haley Berrisford, who turned 12 recently, won four medals at the provincials, competing as an 11-year-old.
Jamie Ferguson, a Grade 10 student who had been in Orca in the past, has returned to the swim club.
Malar said Ferguson is close to qualifying nationally, with a time about one second off in the 50-metre backstroke.
For this season, Malar will be away from coaching on maternity leave but her husband, Delano Duchek, will coach the team.
She added that there is a need for more qualified coaches to work with the club.