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The start of something extraordinary

Kaiapoi community get historic swimming event back on the blocks

The Kaiapoi community swimming event known as the Kane Shield finally returned this July after damage to the Kaiapoi Aquatic Centre in the September 2010 earthquake meant the event had not been able to be run.

The first Kane Shield event was held in 1948 when the Kaiapoi Swimming Club (now known as North Canterbury Swim Club) was looking for a way to boost funds for the club. Bill Kane the president of the club suggested a community relay competition, a shield was made out of a bit of curly beech and the shield has been swum for ever since.

The event is open to anyone that lives, works, goes to school in Kaiapoi or belongs to a Kaiapoi Sports Club and returned this year with 96 competitors taking to the pool and plenty of supporters for each team. The night saw many new and young faces as well as teams and families that have competed in the past.

Swimming New Zealand Education Advisor Tracey Hickman was part of the night and said it was a great success with many participants and spectators having a great time and looking forward to entering their teams in for next year.

This iconic event has encouraged many children to want to learn to swim, made many people train leading up to the event and encouraged a social gathering.