Hundreds gather in tent city for swim meet
“Cup your hands! Cup your hands!”
“Push! Push! Kick! Kick!”
“Come on, keep it up! Finish!”
“Way to go!”
A crowd estimated at 800 visited Hillsboro for the 2018 Mid-Kansas League swimming championships Saturday.
Starting at 7 a.m. and continuing well into the late afternoon, as each of 80 separate events was called, coaches, parents, and friends gathered poolside to cheer young competitors on.
Between events, many retired to a massive tent city erected just east of the municipal pool, where competitors and supporters relaxed, shaded from bright sun as temperatures soared into the 90s, hitting 96 degrees by the end of the meet.
Swimmers and their entourages from Abilene, Council Grove, Hesston, Herington, Lindsborg, and Peabody joined Hillsboro competitors and fans, filling virtually every available parking space but efficiently spaced out so that the site remained organized and accessible.
In overall team scores, Hesston narrowly outscored Hillsboro to win the overall title, but more important, many swimmers — up to 21 for some events — were able to participate.