Making waves

River Safety Week kickoff event is a real splash

HERE FISHY FISHY: Jacob Galloup, 5, tries to “hook” a fish during a River Safety Week kickoff event on Monday at the Charles E. Fairman Community Pool. The Big Rapids Jaycees organized the event, where lesson swimmers were able to play several games and better understand the importance of learning to swim. (Pioneer photo/Jonathan Eppley)

GUEST SWIM INSTRUCTOR: River safety mascot Sammy the Salmon gives instruction to a group of lesson swimmers on Monday at the Charles E. Fairman Community Pool. Sammy and the Big Rapids Jaycees will participate in several events through Friday during River Safety Week. (Pioneer photos/Jonathan Eppley)

BIG RAPIDS — To promote the importance of safe swimming, the Big Rapids Jaycees and water safety mascot, Sammy the Salmon, kicked off River Safety Week on Monday at the Charles E. Fairman Community Pool.

Lesson swimmers were able to play games for prizes, meet with Sammy and get tips on safe swimming. Organizers were pleased with the first time event.

“We’re here to support the education of learning to swim and raise awareness about water safety,” said Jaycee Tyler Schuberg. “Swimming lessons are just so important.”

Sammy and the Jaycees will make an appearance at Big Rapids Middle School during lunch on Thursday to pass out temporary river safety tattoos, as well as promote river safety. Lunch is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Sammy will arrive at noon.

River Safety Week will conclude during Charlie Simar’s musical performance from noon to 1 p.m. on Friday at Pocket Park. Jaycee Matt Yeoman will be on site to shoot and print photographs of children with Sammy the Salmon at no cost.

Visit the photo gallery to see more photos from the kickoff event.


Posted by Jonathan Eppley

Jonathan Eppley is news editor for the Pioneer. He designs and copy edits the Pioneer daily, and manages staff in the evening. Eppley joined the Pioneer staff in 2010. He can be reached at (231) 592-8357 or at

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