Written by Danielle Campo in the Windsor Star (7 April 2016)

In just a few short months Windsor will be a place where amazing athletes will make their dreams come true. It’s not just about the athletes, it is about all the visitors, families, students, volunteers, and companies that will come to discover this amazing city we all call home.

Do you know what is happening all over the world right now? I would like to take a minute to share my past journey with you.

It was just a little over 18 years ago now that I was swimming lap after lap at Adie Knox Herman pool during the very early hours of the mornings and late into the evening. I was making sure my technique was perfect and everything was set for my first World Swimming Championship. I was just 13 years old and was going to represent my country and my city in Christchurch New Zealand.

I was so excited and nervous. I remember taking the time to research my destination, filled with wondered about this amazing journey I was about to embark on.

I looked everywhere for information about Christchurch and the more I read the more enthralled I became. My dream of swimming for Canada was coming true. During opening ceremonies we walked through the streets of Christchurch. There were New Zealand flags on almost every home and you could not help but feel the pride these people had for their country and their small city.

As the years have passed, I can’t remember the small details of the amazing city. However, what has never left my mind was the people and the community. Everywhere our team went we were met by welcoming people. The volunteers of these games made us feel so welcomed and so at home. The competition was a blast and I left those games with the title of a gold medalist world record holder.

So, why take the time to write about an experience in my life that happened over 18 years ago? It is because I couldn’t be more excited that my home city now has the opportunity to display to the world just how amazing Windsor is.

Did you know that in just a few short months some of the greatest swimming athletes will be in Windsor competing for a title of best in the world? We will have athletes, coaches, families, media, sponsors, and dignitaries, from all over the world coming to our small city and discovering what we already all know, how welcoming and beautiful our city truly is.

FINA could have chosen any city in any country to host the 2016 Short Course World Championships. They chose Windsor, and we have the opportunity to be the place where athletes’ dreams will come true. It’s not just about the athletes, it is about the amazing connections that will happen in our city. People who will never have heard of Windsor will come to know and love the city we call home.

More importantly, each and every one of us have the chance to be a part of it. Come out, volunteer for the games, purchase tickets to cheer on our local athletes and share in each and every athlete’s dream. Don’t miss out on your opportunity to be a part of the magic and excitement of this amazing event.

For my entire swimming career no matter where I went I always have felt the support of this amazing community, Windsor. Thank you for inspiring and supporting me to reach my dreams. I truly am so excited to share our amazing city with the entire world.



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Image taken from the Muscular Dystrophy Canada Awards 2011.  (Copyright Creative Commons)