Today we traveled out to East Fork Lake here in Cincinnati for the Ohio LSC 2008 Open Water Championships.  Taylor was defending her title from last year and looking to improve on her record setting time. She would be swimming 2,000 meters on a course that was essentially a line with a lap being 1,000 meters.

They changed up the start this year with all swimmers starting in the water holding a rope in a line (green line on diagram).  Last year they started in heats out of the water and running into the water.  Taylor had a strategy which was to be close but not be too close to the course line then get out quick away from the pack.  In open water swimming there are no lanes and getting kicked, hit, or even pulled on is not uncommon, so she wanted to get in front quick.

Shortly after the start she was 3rd.  The 1st place girl took off fast and had a decent lead pretty quick.  As they swam away from the start it was harder and harder to see them in the distance.  Also, the end of the course had drifted out further in the lake, so it was no longer a straight line (see diagram). At the bend it looked like Taylor was in the lead.  As she passed by us going down the course she clearly was in the lead by a large amount.  She just kept pulling away, since she didn’t have anyone in front of her and she wanted to stay out front.  At this point I was worried she might be going out too strong as this is not something she has practiced or has as a regular competition.

As she continued to swim and there was no one around her she was wondering if she had made a mistake and was off course, so more than once stopped to look behind her and see where the other swimmers were.  The next closest was probably a 100 yards behind, so they were not easy to see, but she continued on.

At the finish there was a large orange buoy that you had to pass before turning to the finish.  When the 10 & unders swam earlier in the morning many messed this up, so we were concerned she might make the same mistake.  No need to worry she swam around the buoy won her 2nd Ohio State Open Water Championship in a dominating fashion.  (We are waiting for official results, so I don’t have times which are supposed to be posted by this weekend.  I will updated with official results and times. Another new record?)

The winner gets a warm up jacket in addition to the Gold medal.


Tomorrow Taylor competes in the Ohio LSC 2008 Open Water Championships.  She could have swam in 2006, but wasn’t sure if she wanted to swim “open water” competition.  It is much different than swimming in a pool.  She went and watched in 2006 and wished she had signed up for the event.

She competed in her 1st ever open water swim last year at the Ohio LSC 2007 Open Water Championships.

She won and set a meet record!

Taylor Ohio State Open Water Champion


This weekend was a swim meet for the Dschaak household.  We started Friday morning.  The meet was a prelim-final meet Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Yes, Sunday.  I spent Father’s Day running the computers for the meet.  The weather was nice, so we were able to grill out between prelims and finals.

Alex only swam Friday.  Her shoulder has been bothering her the last couple of weeks, so we pulled her from the meet after it became apparent she wasn’t going to get anything from competing.  She spent the weekend doing her physical therapy.  She’s off to University of Texas for swim camp in a week.

Taylor swam all three days.  In 9 events she finished with 5 first place finishes and 5 personal best times. She swam a new Zone cut in the 200 Free.  She brought another trophy home after winning the high points trophy for her age group.

You can view the complete results: CLICK HERE


This is an outbreak year for the 17 year cicada here in Greater Cincinnati.  These creepy little (1 1/2 to 2 inches) buggers emerge after 17 years in the ground.  This years “brood” hatched an estimated 2-3 billion cicadas in the Cincinnati Metro area. Yes, that was BILLION with a “B”.   This is a follow up to the brood that emerged in 2003 when approximately 7-8 billion hatched, so this time around is considered minor. Hah!

They come out of the ground in masses.  Since our home is newer with no older trees we only get the odd one (like the guy above on Tanya’s hand bag).  If you are unfortunate enough to live in an older area you are facing massive numbers of cicadas. We have friends who nearly filled their 30 gallon garbage can with the carcasses and shells of the emerging cicadas.

Besides the sheer number and creepy look they are very noisy.  The sound is somewhat eerie if you have never heard it before. It reminds me of something you’d hear in a sci-fi movie.  One cicada can make quite a racket, but when you get thousands in a single tree you get a nearly deafening sound.  I can hear them quite clearly in my office which is behind closed windows. You can hear them clearly even in the car driving down the street with the windows up. If you are on foot, you will have to raise your voice for your companions to hear you speak.  One of Taylor’s friends commented that she can’t hardly think when she is walking in her neighborhood.  While we don’t have masses in the trees at our house I can still hear the buzzing clearly from the older trees down the block.

From the College of Mount St. Joseph here in Cincinnati:

The emergence is now at midpoint in parts of Greater Cincinnati.  Madeira choruses were measured at between 85-90 dB.  The nymphs have completed their emergence in many areas and a massive die-off is now taking place.  Four inch deep mounds of dead cicadas have been observed in Mariemont.

You can read more here:


Taylor had a nice season, but she suffered from shin splints and was concerned with hurting herself and it negatively affecting her swimming. She opted not to run a few races because of that. Taylor finished her track season running on the 4×400 relay at the Fort Ancient Valley Conference Championship Meet where they took 2nd overall.

Taylor was voted in as one of the team captains for next year by the outgoing 8th graders.  She wasn’t sure if she was going to run again next year, but now she feel obligated.

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