Community Spotlight

Deep River Water Park Hosts “World’s Largest Swimming Lesson”

On Thursday, June 3rd, Deep River Water Park in Merrillville Deep River Water Park - Merrillville Indiana Indiana opened their doors to the public for their 2010 summer season of water activities.

It was truly an honor for the NWIMe.com team to be there as the family water park hosted their participation in the Guinness Book of World Records, World’s Largest Swimming Lesson. Dozens of children were there to take their place in the record books when they participated in this International event. This record event participation was part of an ongoing International effort to focus on the vital importance to teach kids to swim.

Sasha Mateer, the operations manager at Deep River Water Park took some time to visit with us and said that the spots for the swimming lesson filled up quick. The event was held from 9:00 AM until 9:45 AM which was prior to the official opening to the public at 10:00 AM.

One of the sponsors for the swimming lesson event is the World Waterpark Association of which Sasha Mateer is a member of the education committee.

Mateer also had this to say,

“Tragically, drowning is the second leading cause of unintended injury related death of children between the ages of 1 and 14. Unfortunately, research shows that if a child doesn’t learn to swim before the third grade, they will likely never will. The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson was created to help spread the word that swimming saves lives.” (see an interview with Sasha Mateer below)

In part of a press release by the Deep River Water Park;

Gold Medalists Janet Evans and Rowdy Gaines are championing the WLSL. effort to help convey that loss of life from drowning can be prevented through awareness and training. As parents, both athletes feel a strong commitment to teaching children how to be safe in and around water.

“I’m thrilled to be working with the World’s Largest Swimming Lesson to help spread the word that swimming lessons saves lives, said Rowdy Gaines. “Teaching children to swim is a key component in drowning prevention, and The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson is a great way to draw attention to the issue.”

“It is so important to remind everyone to be water aware at the beginning of the summer swimming season,” said Mateer.


The swimming lesson is being presented by a coalition of the nation’s leading water safety and training organizations including: Association of Pool and spa Professionals, International Swimming Hall of Fame, International Swim Instructors Association, Independent Poll and Spa Service Association, Jeff Ellis & Associates, National Aquatics Safety Company, National Recreation and Park Association, Starfish Aquatics Institute, Swim for Life Foundation, United States Swim School Association and the World Waterpark Association.

A bit chilly on that morning, but that didn’t stop anything! Everyone had a good time,  the swimming lesson was a success and then the park opened on schedule at 10:00 AM.

We were certainly glad to be there to see it!

Deep River Water Park is owned and operated by the Lake County Parks.

For more information, you can contact Lake County Parks at 219-769-PARK

Contact Deep River Water Park at 219-947-7850

Swimming Lesson Highlights Video

Sasha Mateer (Deep River Water Park Operations Manager) Interview