2013 Make a Splash Tour Kicks off in New York City!
The USA Swimming Foundation, in partnership with Phillips 66, kicked off its 5th annual Make a Splash Tour in New York City from May 16-18.
The Foundation was joined by Make a Splash ambassador Cullen Jones, and USA Swimming Foundation ambassador Rowdy Gaines. Jones, a celebrated Olympic gold medalist and the first African-American male to hold a swimming world record, almost drowned at the age of five. Jones’ commitment to the tour and its lifesaving message has helped enhance publicity and expand the reach of the Make a Splash campaign to a wide audience of parents, learn-to-swim providers, educators and community leaders. Rowdy Gaines is a three-time Olympic gold medalist, and NBC’s “voice of swimming.”
The tour included a series of press events, including:
A special ABC news segment dedicated to preventing tragedy in the water with Cullen Jones:
Cullen Jones discusses the critical importance of learning to swim with NBC’s Tamron Hall:
2012 Olympian and Brooklyn native Lia Neal talks with News 12 Hudson Valley about making an impact in her hometown:
Cullen Jones makes a splash with New York’s ABC 7 reporter Amy Freeze:
Olympians Help Push Summer Swim Safety on Colorado 9News
Additionally, the USA Swimming Foundation visited the Empire State Building to accept a proclamation from the NYC Mayor’s Office, which officially declared May 16-May 18 Make a Splash Water Safety Days. In celebration of this monumental event, the Empire State Building turned blue for water safety on Saturday, May 18th.
The kickoff concluded with a busy day of swim lessons, as Olympic and World Champions Swimmers Lia Neal, Jimmy Feigen, Josh Schneider, Mel Stewart and Sue Anderson canvassed the city to share the lifesaving message of learn-to-swim, teaching and inspiring kids at 10 New York City locations.
Meet Cullen Jones
After nearly drowning at the age of five, Cullen Jones overcame his fear of water to win a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He was also the first African-American male to hold a world record in swimming. Over the past three years, Cullen has tirelessly advocated for the importance of learning to swim, and has been able to convey the message of water safety and education to a wide audience of parents, learn-to-swim providers, educators and community leaders.
Cullen's all-star performance at the 2012 London Olympics launched him further into stardom, bringing home one gold and two silver medals for Team USA.
Get to know Cullen as he talks about his two passion's in life, the sport of swimming and the USA Swimming Foundation's water safety initiative, Make a Splash. Click here.
2012 Make a Splash Tour with Cullen Jones