President's Welcome Message


Welcome to the 2019-2020 swim season!

This season we are building upon a solid foundation from last season.  We had five swimmers attend the Ontario Provincial Championship meet at the end of June. Two swimmers attended the Canadian Junior Swimming Championships. In addition, two Stingrays alumni, Olivia Ellard and Bailey Andison, represented Canada at international events this summer, with Bailey winning a bronze medal at the Pan Am games recently. These are phenomenal results for a small team like the Stingrays!

The club experiences a certain amount of turnover each year. This year, however, we are starting the season about ten swimmers short of our historical average.  I am asking all our parents and coaches to help get the word out about our club and help us boost registration for this year.  

This year will also be a challenge when it comes to officials, after the departure of our long serving Club Officials Chair. As you may know, each club requires a minimum number of registered and trained officials to be able to host sanctioned meets.  In the past, these home meets have contributed thousands of dollars to our operating budget. Therefore, I would ask that all parents with competitive swimmers sign up to be an official and attend a training session. This is the best way to see your swimmer in action!

This year we are working on refreshing our manuals and documents that will help us communicate with our swimmers, parents, and families. Andrew Perkins is working on updating our website. Barb King is working on a swimmer family handbook. Rod Agar is working on getting new coaching resources. I am personally working to put together a package to help senior swimmers understand what comes after swimming in high school.  To make it easier to find us online you can now find us at Together these pieces will help everyone find us and understand what to expect when their child joins our club! 

We have decided to change up our home meet format significantly this year. After a few years of declining enrolment for our main January meet, we have decided to move the Canadian Tire Perth Mike Brown meet to October this year (25, 26, 27). In addition, we have scheduled two more meets; a “Valentine’s” meet on February 8, 2020, and a “Maple” meet on April 26, 2020. Please put these dates in your calendar and plan to attend! (Please note these dates are subject to change if there are issues getting proper sanctioning).

The first practice of the season will be on September 21. The practice schedule remains unchanged from last year. There will be assessments of any new swimmers wanting to join our club from 4-6 pm on Tuesday Sept 24 and Thursday Sept 26. We will have a welcome breakfast and information session for all families on Saturday September 28. Our coaches will be available from 8-9 am to give a short talk each and answer questions while the swimmers are in the pool.  The swimmers are welcome to join us after 9. I am looking forward to seeing everyone that day!

We have a very strong roster of returning coaches this year. Each of them has many strengths and I look forward to working with all of them!

I wish everyone a great swimming season this year!

Matthew Barnabe