CAMDEN, Maine—Though still in its infancy, the Islesboro Crossing for LifeFlight fundraising swim has already gained recognition as a top-notch event from athletes and volunteers alike who want to be a part of something inspiring on the coast of Maine. In just two years, the event has raised more than $125,000, all to support Maine’s only statewide critical care transport service.
The 3rd annual Islesboro Crossing is scheduled for Saturday, August 29 at 7am. Swimmers will start at Point Lookout Resort’s beach in Lincolnville and finish just north of the Grindle Point Lighthouse on Islesboro. This year’s event has already garnered generous support from Point Lookout Resort, Camden National Bank and Maine Magazine.
“LifeFlight is a valuable resource for people and communities throughout Maine, and we’re pleased we can help them,” said Greg Dufour, president and chief executive officer, Camden National Bank. “The 3rdannual Islesboro Crossing will both support the need for critical care transport services and showcase a great venue in Penobscot Bay.”
“The generous support from Camden National illustrates their long-term commitment to the people of Maine,” said Thomas Judge, LifeFlight’s executive director. “This community-based philosophy of giving back is deeply embedded in the culture of Camden National Bank.”
Every year, LifeFlight helps more and more critically ill and injured residents and visitors to Maine regardless of their ability to pay. Last year, the annual number topped 1,600, with a total of more than 18,000 since operations began in 1998. The nonprofit, statewide emergency medical helicopter service is a lifeline for Maine’s remote and rural communities, but it relies on private donations from individuals, businesses and foundations to stay in the air.
“We are proud to be part of this event, to help LifeFlight raise awareness and tell their incredible story of heroism that happens each time they take to the air,” said Elizabeth Quaglieri, assistant publisher of Maine magazine.
Last year’s event attracted 60 swimmers, each with his or her own personal kayak or paddleboard escort, and an additional 25 volunteers and sponsors. This year, more than two dozen swimmers have already committed to make the journey across the channel and raise much needed funds from their own communities, all of which goes to ensure everyone in Maine has access to the critical care they need, when they need it.
The 3rd annual event will once again feature an athlete dinner on Friday evening at Point Lookout Resort, as well as a community gathering Saturday morning to welcome swimmers on Islesboro from approximately 8am to 11am. If available, a LifeFlight helicopter may also make an appearance on Islesboro.
“Point Lookout is honored to be able to host this event and help provide swimmers with a bird’s eye view of their upcoming challenge during the opening ceremony,” said David Tassoni, Senior Vice President of Operations at athenahealth, which owns Point Lookout.
Experienced swimmers, along with volunteers and sponsors, who would like to take part in the 2015 edition of the Islesboro Crossing should register today. The deadline to sign up is August 22 and the entrance fee per swimmer is $125 (participants can raise it or pay it themselves). Additional fundraising incentives are also being offered, including LifeFlight hats, coffee and personalized sweatshirts. For further details on the swim, contact the LifeFlight Foundation at 207-230-7092.
LifeFlight of Maine is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit air medical and critical care transport organization. LifeFlight helicopters, flying at 165 miles per hour, bring lifesaving critical care professionals and equipment directly to the patient. It also provides advanced emergency medical training to Maine’s hospitals, emergency medical services (EMS) and public safety agencies. Overseen by 21 physicians, LifeFlight cared for more than 1,600 critically ill and injured patients last year. Since its inception in 1998, LifeFlight has transported more than 18,000 patients from every hospital and nearly all of Maine’s communities and islands.