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African-American-Owned Private Swim Club to Celebrate 50 Years

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by UrbanMecca

The Nile Swim Club, the nation’s first and only African-American-owned private swim club today announced that James O. Ellis III, nationally renowned swimming instructor and inspiration for the 2007 movie Pride, which starred Terrence Howard, will deliver the keynote address at its 50th Anniversary Gala on October 10, 2008. The event will be held at The Oaks Ballroom, 511 Oaks Lane, Glenolden , PA., at 6:30pm.

Commenting on the Nile’s 50th Anniversary, the organization’s president, Thomas M. Gary, said, “It’s about pride, history and core family values. Those are the only reasons this club has survived … because of the people who want to see it prosper and grow and who, themselves, want to prosper and grow through its presence in the community.”

He continued, “We invited Mr. Ellis to speak at this event because of his national and international reputation as an influential African American in the world of swimming and his ties to the Philadelphia community, as a whole. In our opinion, there wasn’t a single person in the country who was more appropriate to be our guest speaker on this historic occasion. ”

Ellis, a 37-year veteran swimming instructor and founder of the Philadelphia Department of Recreation Swim Club, is credited with training and developing more than 10 U.S. National Swim Team members.

The Nile Swim Club, based in the Philadelphia suburban borough of Yeadon, Pennsylvania, got its start in 1958 when African-American residents banded together to incorporate the swim club, acquire two acres of land and open the swimming pool in 1959, after being denied admission and membership to the racially exclusive, but now defunct, Yeadon Swim Club. Today, the club owns a 4.5 acre parcel of land and claims a membership of 210 families.

The $5 million capital expansion project will include, among other amenities, the construction of three heated pools, an 18-hole miniature golf course, a 150-seat banquet facility, a fitness center and basketball and tennis courts.

SOURCE The Nile Swim Club

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Written by Symphony

September 22, 2008 at 12:31 am

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