Aquatic director bobs for bucks to support Boys and Girls Club of Charlottetown

Jim Day
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Adam Ross of Charlottetown, the aquatic director at the CARI complex, gives two wrinkly thumbs up well into his 24-hour float-a-thon Friday. Ross took to the water to raise funds for the Boys and Girls Club of Charlotetown.

At quick glance, Adam Ross may appear to be a beginner swimmer, bobbing up and down in the water with a floatation belt secured around his waist.

The 24-year-old Charlottetown resident, in fact, swims with great ease and ability without the aid of floatation devices.

Ross, the aquatics director at the CARI complex, has simply been floating for funds.

He was the top fundraiser last year in the Capital One Race for Kids, raising about $800 for the Boys and Girls Club of Charlottetown.

This year, he wanted to step up his game by doing one big event to draw donations. He decided to hop into the pool at the CARI complex for a one-person, 24-hour float-a-thon.

The Guardian caught up with Ross poolside Friday with roughly six-and-a-half hours left in his self-imposed floating challenge.

All that lying about in the pool has proven to be far from relaxing.

His legs have cramped up on several occasions. His arms are dead tired from constant treading of water.

Even though the water is 28 C, Ross has endured his share of the chills that leaves his body shaking and his teeth chattering.

His hands and feet resemble large, pale white prunes.

An attempt to catch some sleep on a large, floating mat in the pool proved futile. Ross managed to nod off for a few minutes but the constant motion and noise was not conducive to sleeping.

He also had two lifeguards stay overnight Thursday to keep an eye on him to make sure he stayed safely afloat.

A steady stream of visitors was key to keeping his spirits up and curbing boredom from the tedious float-a-thon.

Ross only allotted three 20-minute breaks out of the pool over 24 hours of floating.

Of course, many posed the issue of shrinkage raised in a classic Seinfeld episode.

"I think the common reaction is 'that I'm crazy,''' he adds.

However, people quickly warmed to his exhausting effort when he talked passionately about the purpose of his float-a-thon.

"It's more about the cause...the Boys and Girls Club does a lot in the community,''

The Boys and Girls Club of Charlottetown is a community-based, charitable organization dedicated to meeting the needs of hundreds youth, through a variety of quality, structured educational, remedial, and recreational programs.

The club, which welcomes children and youth from ages six through 2, served 18,500 healthy snacks last year and provided 100 youth a free after school physical activity program in 2013. The club also operates an evening drop-in Survival Centre for homeless and at risk youth.

Ross will continue to collect donations until next Friday. Donations can be made online at www.raceforkids.ca or at the front desk of the CARI complex.

JDay@TheGuardian.pe.ca

Organizations: Boys and Girls Club of Charlottetown, Capital One

Geographic location: Charlottetown

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