Kicking off fall with 12-mile swim

David Quick/Staff The kayakers who accompany swimmers during the 12-mile Swim Around Charleston also face physical challenges of sitting and paddling for four or more hours.

Nearly 30 solo swimmers and more than a dozen relay teams are set to “Swim Around Charleston” in the fifth annual 12-mile, open-water swim at noon Saturday.

“Things are looking good for Saturday, but now we need the weather (to cooperate). ... I need good weather because an alternate date is not feasible. The logistics are too much,” says race founder and director Kathleen Wilson.

Wilson is an accomplished local marathon swimmer and recently attempted to swim from Tobago to Trinidad but had to quit due to illness.

As for the Swim Around Charleston, Wilson says registrations have dropped slightly but that registrants hail from 13 states, the farthest being Arizona.

The swim starts at Remley’s Point in Mount Pleasant, goes around the peninsula of downtown Charleston and ends at the I-526 bridge over the Ashley River. Race festivities are at the adjacent W.O. Thomas Boat Landing Shelter.

Registration for the event, which supports Wilson’s SwimCalm adult swimming program, closed Aug. 28.

The event features a pre-race meeting for swimmers and accompanying paddlers and boaters at 5 p.m. Friday at the Omar Shrine Temple, 171 Patriots Point Blvd.

Online: www.swimaroundcharleston.com

Physical fitness should be a part of everyone’s life, but often those with physical or mental disabilities have a more difficult time accessing recreational opportunities.

The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission works to offer those opportunities and will showcase them this weekend at the new adaptive surfing clinic, Wheel to Surf, on Saturday and the second annual Adaptive Recreation Expo on Sunday.

Wheel to Surf will be held 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday at Folly Beach County Park. The event is free but preregistration is required by calling (843) 795-4386.

Sunday’s expo will be noon to 5 p.m. at James Island County Park. The expo will feature a variety of additional modified recreational activities — including yoga, archery, paddling, fishing and climbing — so that those with physical challenges can participate. Admission is free with the regular $1 per person gate admission.

“The Adaptive Recreation Expo weekend will showcase a variety of adaptive sports and leisure activities,” says Susie Goudy, the commission’s assistant recreation director. “It is the perfect avenue for our patrons with physical limitations to try something new, rediscover a past recreational pursuit, and to just have fun. That is what this event is all about.”

Online: www.ccprc.com.

After three years of holding the Oktoberfest 5K at Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park, the town nixed the location because of construction along Harry Hallman Boulevard and the charity race is moving to Laurel Hill Plantation County Park.

The race, which followed the template of the Catch the Leprechaun race and was held on Thursday evenings, also has changed to a more conventional time, 9 a.m. Saturday.

The East Cooper Breakfast Rotary Club hosts the German-themed event, complete with a Bavarian beer garden (beer sponsors being local Palmetto and Westbrook brewing companies), as a fundraiser for its charities. This year, the club will team up with the local Marine Reserve Unit again to donate bikes to the Toys for Tots Bike Drive.

In addition to Toys for Tots, the club sponsors the Happy Feet Rotary Program by providing funds for many Lowcountry school-age children to purchase a pair of shoes at no cost to the child. Some of the children depend on this program each year to fill the need.

The cost is $30 today and Friday and $35 on Saturday.

Online: www.oktoberfest5k.net.

The sickle cell disease services of COBRA (The Committee on Better Racial Assurance) will hold a run and walk event, 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at Park Circle in North Charleston. Registration will be 8:15-8:45 a.m. Saturday. The cost is $10 for an adult and $5 for a child.

Call (843) 225-4866 with any questions.

It’s always interesting to me to see how some sports and activities are dominated by gender, such as yoga for women and cycling for men. But both activities, locally, having been making strides to diversify in recent years.

Today, 7-9 p.m., Trek bicycle store in Mount Pleasant will help foster the sport even more with Ladies Night @ Trek. The Facebook page describes it as “an enjoyable evening dedicated to local ladies who ride bicycles! All ages and styles or riding are welcome, from recreational cruising to racing. Refreshments will be provided.”

The free event includes a preview of Bontrager’s new ladies fall and winter collection, a crash course on fixing a flat tire and making brake adjustments, bicycle bingo with prizes, safety tips trivia, recipe swap, free raffle and 20 percent off everything attendees can cram into a large shopping bag.

Contact Sylvie Baele with questions at sylvie@trekbikesofmountpleasant.com!

At 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at Alhambra Hall, the East Cooper Land Trust will unveil a study about the potential for an 80-mile, off-road trail from the Cooper River to the Santee River.

Catherine Main, the trust’s director, said the study introduces what will be a long-term project, likely taking years, and even decades, to design and build.

“But if you don’t dream, it will never happen,” she said in article in the Sept. 21 edition of The Post and Courier.

The land trust recently spent $35,000 for the study, conducted by Alta Planning + Design. Benefits of the trail include an estimated $83 million in economic and tourism benefits and annual increase in biking trips by 2.23 million and walking trips by 1.39 million.

While the unveiling comes in the wake of a referendum on a proposed Mount Pleasant tax increase for recreation and open space acquisition, there are no guarantees the town will earmark funds for the trail.