Now in its fifth year, this open water swim attracts swimmers across the country to raise funds for LifeFlight of Maine, a nonprofit organization and the state's only emergency medical helicopter service. Whether you're swimming, paddling, or volunteering, this fundraiser will challenge and inspire you. Because when you cross the bay, you're helping LifeFlight bring the hospital to the patient--whether it's across the bay or across the state of Maine.
The 5k ocean swim across the West Penobscot Bay channel offers a heartwarming spirit, inspiring stories, and a hero's welcome on Islesboro, including a flyover salute from the LifeFlight helicopter.
"I first learned about Lifeflight when I was 11 and my friend crashed into a tree while skiing. She hit her head badly and spent a week in a coma. If Lifeflight hadn't flown her to the hospital she could have died from her injuries. I also know a little girl who was badly burned and had to flown to Boston. I thought it was amazing that people could be treated for injuries in a helicopter.
When I found out there was a swim to raise money for Lifeflight's new helicopters, I thought, I can do that. I've been swimming with the Bluefish swim team since I was 7. Three of my teammates are also doing the Crossing; we were the 2016 state champs for the free relay. Also 2 coaches and some swim team parents. I thought I could maybe raise a few hundred dollars, but I have already raised over $3000. As a team we are well over $5,000.
I'm a little nervous to be way out in the ocean, but my dad will be paddling with me and I'll be swimming with my teammates. If all I have to do is swim so lives can be saved, it will be worth it. "