Swimmers take on Edgewater in Brogan Open Water Classic

July 14, 2018

Swimmers take on Edgewater in Brogan Open Water Classic

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Chicago has Big Shoulders, a massively popular race in Lake Michigan. Cleveland has its own open-water water swimming tradition: the Brogan Open Water Classic at Edgewater Beach.

Ohio Masters Swim Club hosted the 28th annual event Saturday, with nearly 100 swimmers racing 1/2-mile, 1-mile and 2-mile races. The fastest 2-milers finished in less than 45 minutes.

“I love open-water swimming,” said Mike Coleman, who came from Georgia to visit friends and swim the Brogan race. He’s swam eight open races before. The last was in New Zealand.

“This is much better,” Coleman said.

Ohio Masters simmer Marianne and Doug Brogan of Bay Village started the race in 1990, after getting the idea at an aquatic convention. The Lake Erie classic was named after the Brogans when Marianne died in 2016.

Saturday, the weather was perfect, with sun shining on a placid, silky lake. Kayakers, stand-up paddleboarder, lifeguards and the U.S. Coast Guard all protected the course, a triangle within the Edgewater bay.

“This is my first open-water swim,” said Grand Untener. “I just want to finish.”

Finish she did, with friends. Watch the Facebook Live video with cleveland.com’s sister website, RocktheLake.com.

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