The events for the coming year include the Buzzards Bay Swim on June 26, Team Buzzards Bay at the Falmouth Road Race on August 15 (pending permitting by the Town of Falmouth), and the Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride on October 3.
“People are eager for activities that they can do together safely, and we share their excitement about creating opportunities to celebrate together outdoors, on the water and around the Bay,” said Mark Rasmussen, president of the Coalition. “While we will need to adapt the events, we are reasonably optimistic that we will be able to stage a limited swim, the run, and ride in a way that is fun and safe for our participants, our volunteers, and our staff.”
Plans for the Buzzards Bay Swim are already underway. Registration for past swim participants opened on Feb. 15. The event will reach capacity quickly. Normally, the swim draws more than 300 participants and raises over $150,000 for the Bay protection efforts. This year, it will be limited to 50 people to facilitate social distancing. As a result, invitations to register began with individuals who have participated in more than 10 previous Coalition swim events.
“The response from our most dedicated swimmers has been extremely enthusiastic,” said Jennifer Downing, vice president of engagement for the Coalition. “It was disappointing for everyone that last year’s swim had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. While we would like to be able to immediately return to an entirely open registration process, we are thrilled to be able to get back into the water this year. The swim is a great celebration of clean water, and it is an important source of support for protecting the Bay.”
At the same time, the Coalition is working on planning the 2021 edition of the Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride. The date has been chosen—Sunday, Oct. 3—and planning is underway to return to the event’s traditional 100-mile route (and shorter options) from Sakonnet Point to Woods Hole. The 2020 ride took place safely and successfully, despite the pandemic, on a 66-mile route ending at historic Fort Taber in New Bedford. It brought together nearly 300 registered participants and 58 volunteers, raising more than $215,000 to protect Buzzards Bay. With the mass vaccination effort underway, state and federal officials have predicted that conditions may be much improved by the fall, clearing the way for the full capacity ride all along the Bay’s coastline.
Similarly, the Falmouth Road Race has tentatively announced its plan to hold the race on Saturday, Aug. 15. While details have not been finalized, the race organizers have already awarded entry bibs for the Coalition to field a team for this internationally-renowned running event.