Vera Rivard Becomes Youngest Person to Cross 25 Miles of Lake Memphremagog Open Water

Photo Courtesy: Phil White

On Wednesday, July 18, 2018, Mighty and Mischievous Memphremagog greeted the seven open water swimmers participating In Search of Memphre (July) with headwinds from the north ranging from 10 to 20 MPH for the first 15 miles. The waves and chop were high. Two of the seven completed the 25-mile international swim from the start at the EastSide Restaurant in Newport, Vermont to the finish line on the beach of Magog, Quebec. Sharessa Guiterrez, 37, of Omaha, Nebraska completed with a time of 15 hours and 51 minutes and Vera Rivard, 14, of Springfield, New Hampshire and Derby, Vermont came in in 16 hours and 24 minutes. In doing so, Rivard became the youngest person ever to cross the 25 miles of Lake Memphremagog between Newport and Magog. And she did so in some of the more challenging conditions this lake has to offer.

5 others laid down inspiring swims and completed various distances fighting these headwinds. Cara Marie Manlandro, 28, of Derwood, Maryland, completed 23.5 miles before communication difficulties regarding the landing location caused her to end her swim, just short of the finish. Sandra Frimerman-Bergquist, 34, of Exelsior, MN, Eric Schall, 57, of Kingston, PA, Dan Shub, 69 of Baltimore, MD, and Mary Stabinsky, 41, of Plains, PA, completed various distances ranging from 6 to 17 miles. Shub was the oldest person to attempt a Memphremagog Crossing and the last of those to pull. He completed 17 miles. A great and truly inspiring bit of swimming.

Swimmers left from the EastSide Restaurant in Newport, Vermont at 5:31 am as the sun began to rise. Water temperature ranged from 72 through 74 throughout the day. Skies were sunny. Air temperature was in the 60s and 70s. The high winds began to diminish around noon. After the bend in the lake at Georgeville they became cross winds of 5 to 10 mph or less.

Jay Peak provided shuttle services back to the start, throughout the evening and into the night. The City of Magog provided the beach and docking accommodations for our boats. The EastSide Restaurant also provided docking accommodations and support throughout the staging of the swim.

In Search of Memphre was started in 2011 to promote a more open border with our Canadian friends and to search for the legendary, swimmer friendly, lake creature Memphre. Swimmers in this year’s Search dedicated their swims to the Asylum Seekers and are encouraging donations to the Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project.

The swim was organized by Kingdom Games, which hosts over 25 days of running, biking, swimming and ice skating events in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont and the Eastern Townships of Quebec.

The above press release was posted by Swimming World in conjunction with Kingdom Games. For press releases and advertising inquiries please contact Advertising@SwimmingWorld.com.

3 Comments

3 comments

  1. Signe Linville

    She is an amazing kid! So much grit and zest! 💙 YAY Vera! Your team is so proud of you!!

  2. avatar

    Way to go Vera!! You are truly amazing. I swam across the Cesapeake Bay, 4.4 miles, and I thought that was far!! So
    S proud of you!

Author: Taylor Brien

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Taylor Brien is the Assistant Operations Manager and a staff writer at Swimming World. A native of Bettendorf, IA and a 2015 graduate of Illinois College, she has covered a variety of events since joining the SW team in 2015, including the NCAA Championships, World Championships, Olympic Trials, and 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

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