august, 2020

2020sun16aug9:00 AMSwim to The Moon10K • 5K • 1.2 • .5 mile9:00 AM EST Pinckney Recreation Area, Halfmoon Lake Beach, 8725 Hankerd Rd, Gregory, MI 48137Event Type :SwimRegister now!Volunteer now!Athlete Guide!Results

Swim To The Moon Header Image

Event Details

Please note that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this event could possibly become a virtual event. We will announce the status of the race four weeks prior to the race date. At this time, registration is open for both the live event and the virtual event. If you choose the live event and we need to cancel, you will be automatically transferred to the virtual event unless you opt to defer to next year or transfer to another race.

SWIM TO THE MOON Marathon Swim • 5K • 1.2 MILE • .5 MILE SWIM


**The noob tried it: Epic staffer Colleen Stone’s Swim to the Moon race recap**

Swim to The Moon is an extraordinary open-water swimming adventure through the picturesque Hiland Chain of Lakes near Hell, Michigan. Choose your distance — .5 mile, 1.2 miles, 5K, or 10K — Enjoy the beautiful scenery with plenty of safety and nutritional support along the way, all the while showing support for a very worthy cause: North Star Reach, part of the national SeriousFun Network, is a camp for children with life-threatening, serious, and chronic medical conditions. As a tribute to this extraordinary place as the venue for our swim, we are asking each 10K and 5K participant to raise a minimum of $10 as part of their entry.

You do not need to bring your own support vessel.  We have lifeguards and volunteer kayaks along the way. There will be aid stations with Gatorade, Gu, and Water at every mile.

Swim to the Moon is part of the Global Swim Series and drew participants from 3 countries, 23 US States, and the District of Columbia last year. 


Epic Races welcomes a very special guest: Olympic Bronze Medalist Chris Thompson! At 2:30 PM on Saturday, August 15, 2020, Chris will be leading a swim clinic at North Star Reach for all participants registered for 2020 Swim to the Moon. Learn to be more comfortable in an open-water setting; ask your questions about breathing, body positioning, and more!Chris Thompson Image

Chris’ extensive long-distance swimming career includes U.S. National titles, World Championships, Olympic games, and collegiate championships. Starting in 1996, Chris won seven U.S. National titles in the 1500M and 800M freestyle events. At the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Chris won the bronze medal for the 1500M men’s freestyle event. He was named a nine-time NCAA All American and two- time Big Ten Swimmer of the Year.

Chris earned his Bachelor’s degree at the University of Michigan in 2002 and his Master’s degree at Eastern Michigan University in 2007. In 2002, Chris began his impressive coaching career, starting with the Ann Arbor Swim Club/Club Wolverine. He trained future Navy Seals at the Navy Special Warfare Prep School from 2008 to 2011. Currently, Chris resides in Michigan, where he has been coaching the Plymouth Canton Cruisers since December 2011.

To recap:

Who: Olympic Bronze Medalist Chris Thompson
What: Swim to the Moon Open-Water Swim Clinic
When: Saturday, August 15th, 2020 2:30-4 PM
Where: On beach at 1200 University Camp Dr, Pinckney, MI 48169

We are very excited to have Chris lead our Swim to the Moon Open-Water Swim Clinic!

>> Swag

SWAG… aka… What you get:

In addition to free race pix, each participant will receive:

  • Chip timing, with results posted by the end of race day
  • A fabulous finisher’s medal
  • A super-soft, high-quality race T-shirt (register two weeks in advance of the race to be guaranteed a shirt)
  • The best post-swim snacks around
>> Water Temp & Wetsuits

The water temperature at Swim to the Moon is typically between 75 – 78. Some of the 5 lakes may be a little warmer, some may be a little cooler.


USAT Rule 4.4 Wet suits. Each age group participant shall be permitted to wear a wet suit without penalty in any event sanctioned by USA Triathlon up to and including a water temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit. When the water temperature is greater than 78 degrees, but less than 84 degrees Fahrenheit, age group participants may wear a wet suit at their own discretion, provided however that participants who wear a wet suit within this temperature range shall not be eligible for prizes or awards. Age group participants shall not wear wet suits in water temperatures equal to or greater than 84 degrees Fahrenheit. The wetsuit policy for elite athletes shall be determined by the USAT Athletes Advisory Council. The AAC has set the wetsuit maximum temperature for elite athletes at 68 degrees for swim distances less than 3000 meters and 71.6 degrees for distances of 3000 meters or greater. Any swimmer wearing a wetsuit with a thickness measured in any part greater than 5 millimeters shall be disqualified.

Don’t own a wetsuit but want to rent one?

wetsuit rental discount

>> Zero Waste

The event is a Leave No Trace event. Learn more about our race-day recycling and composting efforts here. Want more information about running a great race and leaving no trace? Click here to visit Happy Planet Running!

Leave No Trace Image

>> Fundraising

We appreciate your support for the reason we are all able to do this epic swim: North Star Reach. North Star Reach is a camp specially designed for children with life-threatening, serious, and chronic medical conditions. Because of their health issues, these children cannot attend a regular summer camp. As part of the SeriousFun Network of camps for children with serious health concerns, North Star Reach offers these kids the chance to enjoy one of childhood’s most valued traditions: a summer of swimming, climbing, canoeing, arts, and crafts, making new friends, and creating lifelong memories. North Star Reach’s facilities include all this and a state-of-the-art medical center staffed 24 hours to support and supervise its campers. Best of all, North Star Reach is free of cost for campers who qualify… and for their siblings.

We have been fundraising for North Star Reach, which serves as the starting location for the 5K and the turn-around point for the 10K, since the beginning of Swim to the Moon. North Star Reach would not be where it is today without the generous help of its fundraisers. This year, as part of the registration for the 10K and 5K swims, we ask each participant to become a fundraiser and raise a minimum of $10. Participants who raise $50 or more will receive special prizes!

  • $50: North Star Reach window cling
  • $100: STTM buff
  • $250: Exclusive NSR T-shirt plus invitation to “No-Hands Spaghetti Dinner” (4:30 pm at camp on August 17th)
  • $350 or more: all of the above plus a North Star Reach License plate frame

All participants may also consider making a donation during registration to help North Star Reach help these special children have the summer of their dreams!

>> Swimsuit Rules

The water temperature at Swim to the Moon is typically between 75 – 78. Some of the 5 lakes may be a little warmer, some may be a little cooler.

All swimmers must wear one swimsuit in one or two pieces. All swimsuits shall be made from textile materials and not contain clasps or zippers. For both men and women, the swimsuit shall not cover the neck and shall not extend past the shoulder nor below the ankles.

Swimmers are not permitted to wear or use webbed gloves, fins, buoyant armbands, or audio players. Snorkels ARE allowed.

Any devices used to maintain body heat are not permitted unless you are entered in the wetsuit division.

Personal Swim Buoys aka “SaferSwimmers” or “Tow Floats” ARE allowed.

>> Distances

The 5K swim starts on the shores of Patterson Lake at North Star Reach; from there, swimmers head south and east through the heavily forested Pinckney Recreation Area, passing through five lakes along the way. Scattered cottages are the only signs of civilization. (Aside, of course, from the dozens of lifeguards, kayak volunteers, and 2 hydration stations.)

10K race participants start at Halfmoon Lake Beach, swim to the North Star Reach which is the start of the 5K.  There will be lifeguards, kayak volunteers, and 2 aid stations along the way.  At North Star Reach, the 10K will then get out of the water and head back to the finish line at Halfmoon Lake Beach.

Both the half-mile and the 1.2-mile swim start at Halfmoon Lake Beach. All events finish at the state beach on the east shore of Halfmoon Lake.

>> Water Safety

Every member of the Epic Lifeguard Team has American Red Cross Waterfront Lifeguarding Certification in addition to basic American Red Cross Lifeguarding Certification. This means that our guards have all taken and passed an additional course in which they received training in the knowledge and skills needed to prevent and respond to emergencies in non-surf, open-water areas. Our superbly trained lifeguards are yet another reason our races are so Epic! Our lifeguards are also able to keep our swimmers safe thanks to our official SUP company, Red Star Board Company. We’re very grateful to have Red Star as part of Epic team.


>> Lodging

Room Blocks available: Saturday, August 15 – Sunday, August 16, 2020


Combines small town charm with easy access to the hustle and bustle of Ann Arbor.

(734) 433-8000

1645 Commerce Park Dr, Chelsea, MI  48118
(10 miles from start)
Last day to book: Friday, July 17, 2020

  • Free High-Speed Internet
  • Complimentary breakfast
  • Fitness Center
  • Heated Pool and Spa

Cancellation Policy: Free Cancellation until 4:00:00 PM local hotel time on registered check-in day.

>> Store

Swim to the Moon 1.2 & .5 Mile Map


Age Groups (Male and Female Age Divisions):

12-13 (0.5-mile and 1.2-mile only), 14-18, 19-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75-79, 80+

10K Swim

1st Place Overall Male/Female
1st Place Masters Male/Female
Top 5 in each age-group

 5K Swim

1st Place Overall Male/Female
1st Place Masters Male/Female
Top 5 in each age-group

1.2 Mile & .5 Mile

1st Place Overall Male/Female
1st Place Masters Male/Female
1st Place in each age-group



Free photos compliments of Epic Races


Watch yourself conquering the race


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Want to practice Open Water Swimming without the pressure of a race? Register for the Epic Open Water Practice Swim presented by Techniq Group on Saturday, May 30th at Big Portage Lake! What’s included?

– Swim tips from a World Open Water Swimming Association certified Open Water Swim Coach

– The highly trained Epic Waterfront Lifeguard Team on the water keeping you safe

– Buoys set at 400 and 750 meter courses – do one or multiple loops for the 1.5 hour event

– A time clock running to track your splits and pace

– An Epic swim cap




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