BY MICHAEL KELLY
NISKAYUNA — For nearly four hours, members of the Starfish Swim Club exhausted themselves Saturday with one lap after another in the Niskayuna High School pool.
For nearly two months prior to the club’s 16th annual “Swim Mania” event, those swimmers exhausted themselves working toward something bigger.
As part of the swim-athon fundraiser, the club with roughly 250 members from across the Capital Region helped pool together nearly $24,000 in total. At least $5,000 of that money will head to the Donna M. Crandall Foundation, which provides financial help to cystic fibrosis patients and their families. Money from the event also goes toward helping to cover the Starfish’s yearly expenses, plus USA Swimming.
Denise Murphy McGraw, the president of the Starfish, said this year’s event was financially the most successful in its history. That’s great, she said, but mainly because it means the lesson the club tries to impart from the effort is taking hold.
“We really just want them all to participate,” she said. “For us as a club, the importance is to teach them about community leadership and to give back to their communities when they can.”