Vera Rivard Inducted In Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall of Fame

Vera Rivard Inducted In Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall of Fame

Courtesy of Charlotte Brynn, Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall of Fame.

Vera Rivard is one of the few teenagers in the swimming community to be inducted in a Hall of Fame. The 16-year-old Rivard was inducted to the Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall of Fame in its Class of 2020.

Charlotte Brynn, chairperson of the Hall of Fame, explains the honor, “Vera completed her first open swim at the Kingdom Swim in Lake Memphremagog in 2014 when she was 10 years old and was hooked. She signed on for the 1.5-mile crossing of Caspian Lake that same year and completed the crossing in bumpy conditions, enjoying it so much that she turned around and swam back, her first 3-mile swim.

Vera has continued to stretch each year, swimming longer swims, and searching out and embracing more challenging conditions. The rougher the water, the more she smiles, and with her quiet, calm pose, puts her head down and swims. In 2015 she became the youngest swimmer to swim across Lake Willoughby, and in 2016 she complete the Kingdom Swim Week, swimming eight Vermont lakes in nine days. She has since completed the Kingdom Swim Weeks in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

In 2017 Vera completed an 18-mile double crossing of Lake Massawippi and in 2018, Vera made history again by being the youngest swimmer to swim the 25.2-mile length of Lake Memphremagog. Vera faced relentless head winds much of the way. In 2019, Vera attended Cork Distance Week in Ireland and completed a 6-hour qualifying English Channel swim.

Despite closed pools, and the logistical challenges presented by the 2020 global pandemic, Vera continued preparations for and completed 20 Bridges, and went on to swim across the English Channel. At 16 years, she has become one of the most accomplished swimmers in Vermont and her homes state of New Hampshire.

Vera continues to inspire swimmers world-wide, with more swims in her sights, including the Catalina Channel and Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming on the horizon.

Vera Rivard Swim Resume:

  • 2014: Kingdom Swim – 1 mile
  • 2014: Caspian – 3 miles
  • 2015: Son of a Swim – 4 miles
  • 2015: Kingdom Swim – 10 km
  • 2015: Willoughby – 5 miles (Record – youngest)
  • 2015 Caspian – 3 miles
  • 2016: Son of a Swim – 6 miles
  • 2016: Kingdom Swim – 10 miles
  • 2015: NEK Swim Week (all 8 lakes) Record – youngest to swim Massawippi (9 miles)
  • 2017: Son of a Swim – 10 miles
  • 2017: Kingdom Swim – 25 km Border Buster; NEK Swim Week (all 8 lakes, including double crossing Massawippi and Willoughby, Record: Youngest to double)
  • 2018: Memphremagog Winter Swim Festival – all 8 events
  • 2018: Son of a Swim – 10 miles
  • 2018: In Search of Memphre – 25 miles
  • 2018: Kingdom Swim – 10 km
  • 2018: NEK Swim Week – all 8 lakes, including double cross of Massawippi and Willoughby
  • 2019: Memphremagog Winter Swim Festival – all 8 events
  • 2019: Son of a Swim
  • 2019: Kingdom Swim – 25 km Border Buster – NEK Swim Week (all 8 lakes)
  • 2020: Memphremagog Winter Swim Festival (all 8 events)
  • 2020: Son of a Swim – 10 miles
  • 2020: 20 Bridges
  • 2020: English Channel

Brynn announced Rivard along with the other Class of 2020 inductees in the Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall Of Fame.  “The Vermont Open Water Swimming Hall of Fame was established in 2016 and recognizes those Vermonters and those with substantial connections to Vermont who have achieved greatness in the open water and those who make significant , awe-inspiring contributions to their success.

The New England State of Vermont is situated in the northeast corner of USA and is one of the most  tranquil and scenic states, boasting many pristine lakes that range in both size and elevation. Much of the appeal is the crystal clear waters, breathtaking mountains, wide open spaces, playful lakes and wonderful open water swimming community which consists of homegrown Vermonters  and those with significant ties to Vermont. It is an honor to congratulate and welcome our new 2020  inductees.

We will be hosting an induction ceremony on July 23rd at Jaspers in Newport, Vermont.  On July 24th, the Kingdom Games will host the 2021 Kingdom Swim with 1-, 3-, 6-, and 10-mile events and a 25 km course held in the magical waters of Lake Memphremagog.”

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Steven Munatones