Chinooks News – August 2021

Return to UIdaho Swim Center Schedule

First day indoors – Monday, August 23rd
Tuesday/Thursday MORNING practices END on Thursday, August 19th - All other practices move indoors

Chinook Fees – New Prices! Starting September 1st

Trimester:    $130 (student rate $80)
Monthly:    $35 (student rate $20)

Credit card payment required for members choosing Monthly billing cycle. Credit card payment is optional for all others. Credit cards are charged automatically on the 1st of each month. If you need to suspend your billing, please contact prior to the beginning of the month.

Add a different payment method by logging into your Chinooks account on ClubAssistant ( Use the “Forgot Username or Password?” link if needed.

Early Morning Parking Passes

Permits to park in UI Lot #39 (Mem Gym/Swim Center) in the early mornings are required. The “Commuter/Overnight/Early AM” permit is $15 (or free with purchase of another annual parking permit). Your reason for needing this permit is “Masters Swimming.”
In person purchase – visit Parking & Transportation Services at the Moscow Intermodal Transit Center on Sweet Ave. 7:30-4:30PM Mon – Fri.
Online purchase + in person pickup – visit URL and follow the links for a “Vendor or Other Permits” to navigate to the “Commuter/Overnight/Early AM” permit.

Palouse Sprint Triathlon – Please Volunteer Soon!

We need your help to count laps at the pool portion of the Palouse Sprint Tri on Saturday, September 11th. This is an early morning job and you’ll be done in time to get to Farmers Market no problem! The PST shares a portion of its profit with the groups that help with staffing the course and our funds go to continue the Adult Learn-to-Swim program that Debbie and Sue are leading (see next item.) Plus it is a great way to promote our swim club to the greater community, especially the triathletes who are less comfortable in the water.

Please sign up soon at this SIGNUP GENIUS LINK:

Adult Learn-to-Swim – Upcoming Sessions

Debbie Bell and Sue Kappmeyer are the certified Adult Learn-to-Swim instructors on our team. They have been sidelined by COVID for holding sessions but are set to restart in September. They need students and potentially volunteer instructors based on the number of people who sign up. Please promote this program to the non-swimmers in your circle of influence.

Adult Learn-to-Swim Lessons

Dates:   Session I:    September 21 – October 1
             Session II:    November 9 – 19
Days:    Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays
Time:    8:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m.
Place:   University of Idaho Swim Center, 1030 S. Rayburn St.
Cost:    $25.00
There will be a maximum of three students per instructor.

To sign up, contact (Debbie Bell & Sue Kappmeyer)

Try Masters Swimming – Results!

We had a really successful July with new members trying out our club during the “Try Masters Swimming” campaign. Five Chinooks returned after an extended hiatus: Caleb Courtney, Stephan Flores, Will Greene, Matthew Miller, and Chantelle Wilson. We gained 8 new members:  Dana Brolley, Josh Courtney, James Fields, Olivia Gordon, Cat Harner, Robert Joslyn, Yvonne Shea and Julie Schott. Please introduce yourself when you see a new face on deck or in your lane! We have about 63 active members.

Thanks to everyone who talked up the club to a new member! Paige has schwag for you!

Open Water Swim Practice – Thursday, August 19th

Finish out the Tu/Th Morning swim season with an open water practice. We’ll set up the pool with no lane lines and OW “buoys” to have a practice focused on open water swimming strategies.

Coeur d’Alene Crossing open water swim – Sunday, August 15th

Last day to register is Wednesday August 9th. Cost is $70+fees for 2.4 mile point-to-point swim; $60+fees for 1.2 mile mid-lake to end-point swim.

Chinooks Newsletter - July 2021 Part DEUX

Try Masters Swimming Month JULY 1st - 31st

WHAT: As part of the rebuilding out of the pandemic effort, Moscow Chinooks is participating in USMS’s Try Masters Swimming month (July 2021). We are offering a week of trial practices before a new participant has to commit to joining the club and USMS is offering their trial membership this month (since our program requires USMS membership to participate.)
WHY: This is what USMS’s CEO Dawson Hughes said in his kickoff letter: “July will be an exciting month for the sport of swimming. Numerous USMS events are restarting around the country, Short Course Nationals will be held, many swimmers are getting back into their fitness routine, and the month will conclude with swimming at the Olympics. July’s Try Masters Swimming campaign is also the culmination of months of planning and communication throughout USMS and will give new swimmers the chance to experience Masters Swimming. In the coming months, we’ll learn how successful our efforts have been to attract new and former members back to the organization we all cherish. We’ll welcome new teammates into our Masters clubs and establish new friendships.”
It's vital that all of us play our part in welcoming new people and integrating them into the coach-led, interval training concept that distinguishes our Chinooks workouts from lap swim.
HOW: Talk to those people who have indicated an interest in your swim routine. Make the risk-free invitation. Have your recruit visit to click on the link for the USMS 30-day trial membership to fill out the form. A copy is delivered to (which distributes to Paige & Shelly plus Kathrine & Tabitha this month). Paige has been reaching out to interested swimmers with more information.

Everyone can read through this brief article about small things each of us can do to help new swimmers – not just this month but always! And feedback to the coach on deck is important, too, if you think there is something that we need to know to help the person have an even better experience the next time.

Finally, there are incentives for the people who bring a new or returning person through the Try Masters Swimming initiative to the Chinooks! And our club can win some nice prizes* for having the most people who become a full member after the campaign prior to August 17th.

Parking at UI

Morning swimmers must display “Commuter Overnight/Early Morning Activity” parking permits to park in UI Lot #39 (Mem Gym/Swim Center). Parking permits for 2021-2022 went on sale starting July 7th online only. In office sales start August 2nd at the Moscow Intermodal Transportation Center (on Sweet Ave.) The cost is still $15 or free with the purchase of an annual pass. Our current permits are good thru August 15th.

BRING EQUIPMENT BACK – deadline July 23

GOSH! Remember way back when in June 2021 when we were disinfecting everything? We checked out a lot of pull buoys and paddles to Chinooks. It’s time to repatriate our gear, take inventory and make it available to everyone. PLEASE BRING BACK CHINOOK-OWNED GEAR BY FRIDAY, JULY 23! Thank you!

Member dues increase

Chinooks member fees going up – see message sent July 11. In short, new fees begin Sept. 1: $130/trimester (or $80 students) and $35/month (or $20 students). If you need to suspend your billing, please contact prior to the beginning of the month. 

Palouse Sprint Triathlon - Saturday, Sept. 11th - 20th ANNIVERSARY!

Palouse Sprint Tri registration is open! Sign up for this 500 yd swim, 15 km bike, and 5 km run happening on Saturday, September 11th around Moscow at Plan to either race it (complete it? ??) or help with counting competitors’ laps that morning at HLAC. Volunteer by signing up on our SignUpGenius or emailing Kathie Lafortune as soon as possible with your commitment. 

UI Parking Attendant Remembered

When you go to buy your parking pass, be sure to read through the remembrance for Margie Schaper who regularly attended Lot #39 to check for our Early Morning parking passes.

Your help needed for Ph.D. student’s study questionnaire

"My name is Seth Rose and I am a Ph.D. student at the University of Idaho studying Sport and Exercise Psychology with advising professor Dr. Damon Burton, Ph.D. 
I am recruiting participants to complete an online survey for my preliminary research titled, “Enduring Stress: A Quantitative Analysis on How Coping Can Improve Sport Well-being in Amateur Endurance Athletes” (IRB#  21-072).
The survey will take approximately 10-12 minutes to complete and responses will be anonymous. The survey will include a general demographic questionnaire and questions about the stress you have personally experienced in your sport, ways of coping, and how it affects your sport well-being.
I would greatly appreciate participation in the survey by athletes who meet these criteria:
1. 18+ years old (any gender)
2.  Are currently training at least 3 days/week for the past 3 months
3.  Have either (a) competed or have been registered for a race in the last 2 years OR (b) have a race scheduled in the next 12 months.
Interested participants are asked to complete the survey by July 30th using this link:
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me via email:"

*Prizes for Percentage growth of members between 6/1 and 8/17
Leaderboard to be updated on Wednesdays beginning 7/14.
Prizes in each tier: 
  • Grand Prize: Colorado Time Systems pace clock, FINIS stopwatch, $150 Marriott gift card, 2022 USMS Membership for coach  
  • Second Place Prize: FINIS stopwatch, $150 Marriott gift card, 2022 USMS membership for coach  
  • Third Place Prize: FINIS stopwatch & 2022 USMS membership for coach

Snake River Swim #2 - July 10, 2021

Ted, Charlie, Coach Kathrine & her friend, Ching, Alena (future Chinook) and Paige

 Coach Kathrine, Paige, Ching, Alena, Charlie and Joy the Dog (photo by Virginia - dog sitter). Look at the sign :-)

Chinooks News – July 2021

Mark your Calendar – YES practice on Monday, July 5th 7:00-8:00AM at UI Swim Center

Cheer for Shelly!

Coach Shelly Ruspakka is competing in the Coeur d’Alene Ironman Triathlon this Sunday (7/27). She and Julie Sawyer (evening Chinook) are taking on this challenge for the Anna Schindler Foundation which helps families with children battling cancer in the Spokane/Inland NW region.

Ways to support Shelly and Julie:

  1. Come cheer in person in CdA! Contact Paige at 208-301-2110 if you want to meet up with other Chinooks. We have room in a cabin on Hayden Lake for Saturday night which enables our Sunday 4:00AM departure to the start line for the swim (pros at 5:00AM, age-groups at 5:35AM)
  2. Cheer at the far-south bike turnaround near the Worley fire station along Hwy 95. The nearest crossroad is W. Setters Rd. A good target for a time is 10:30 AM for the first loop. Bring a chair, umbrella, and noisemakers! (and water, water, water, and sunscreen...)
  3. You can track our Chinooks LIVE online at There are links for Facebook Watch and the Athlete Tracker. Shelly’s bib number is 418. You can also look up athletes by name including Julie and her husband, Eric, who frequents morning lap swim after Chinooks.


Here are Cat Harner, Coach Shelly and Julie Sawyer modeling the tri kits you should look for on the course.

Coach Coverage in July

After the Ironman, Coach Shelly is taking time off to travel with her family through July. A well-deserved vacation! Consider: when the last time was that you *didn’t* have Shelly on deck coaching since June 2020?

  • Coach Kathrine will return to cover the Tuesday/Thursday Morning practices outside.
  • Coach Tabitha will cover the MWF Morning practices.
  • Coach Paige will cover the Tuesday/Thursday Evening practices.
Summer Practice Schedule Changes

MWF Practices move OUTSIDE to the Hamilton-Lowe Aquatic Center on Monday, JULY 26th 5:30 – 6:45 AM

Tu/Th Evening Practices END on Thursday, JULY 22nd and resume Tuesday, AUG. 24th 6:00-7:00 PM

Tu/Th Morning Practices stay the same at 5:45 – 6:45 AM

They're all listed on our website Calendar, too.


Want an excuse to go to Whitefish, MT? There is a Masters Swim Clinic/Camp on Friday, July 30th.

The Cascade Lakes Swim Series in Central Oregon is shortened for “pandemic prudence” to a one day event at Elk Lake with the 3000m and 1500m swims being contested on Saturday, July 31st. Beautiful location - well-run event!

Utah Masters has gone full out on open water swims with 15 (fifteen!) scheduled at different state parks. Check out the list at

Stay cool in the pool, Chinooks!

Chinooks News – June 2021

Summer Schedule Changes – On Hold…

We’re still pending a contract with the City of Moscow to use the Hamilton-Lowe Aquatic Center (HLAC), so we will hopefully know more after June 7th about what our summer schedule will look like.

USMS Summer Fitness Challenge – 2K swim!

Coach Shelly will have us take the 2K Fitness Challenge on Tuesday, June 8th and Wednesday, June 9th. If you want to sign up for the challenge which supports Adult Learn to Swim programs across the U.S. and get some cool schwag, visit

Summer Power Hour

It is also time for another hour swim as a benchmark of our fitness (and/or ability to count our own laps…) Plan to hop right into the pool on Tuesday, June 15th and Wednesday, June 16th to get a full 60 minutes in. Then record your yardage to move Little Chinooki further west toward Tokyo as part of our cooperative goal for 2021.

Farewell to George Spomer

Thanks to everyone who made it to the Farewell to George on May 8th. He’s settled into his new digs in Ellensburg, WA. If you are passing through central Washington, plan a stop to visit for a few minutes. You can also mail greetings to him at [contact Coach Shelly or Paige to get George's contact info.]

Photo of our “still-COVID-cautious” window visit with George. Representing the Chinooks in the blurry double-paned window reflection are Stephan Flores, Paige Buehler, Nate Spain, Asaph Cousins, Glen Murray, Lifeguard Kellan and Virginia Elliott.

Chinooks window visit with George

For fun:

Chinooks News – January 2021 - PART DEUX


Requirements for Swimming in 2021

1. Sign up for practice attendance at

We are limited to 2 people per lane and it helps Coach Shelly plan the workouts and lane spacing.

2. Renew your USMS membership: www/

3. Pay dues this week: $100/trimester

COVID-19 Reminder

When you signed the liability waiver for your USMS membership you agreed to the following (whether you read it or not...)

4.    I acknowledge the contagious nature of COVID-19 and voluntarily assume the risk that I may be exposed to or infected by COVID-19, or other viral or bacterial infection, while participating in any of the Events, and that such exposure or infection may result in personal injury, illness, permanent disability, and death. I agree that if I have a fever, cough, feel short of breath, have any other symptoms, have knowingly been exposed to a communicable disease such as COVID-19 or have traveled to or from a highly impacted area, I will not attend an Event for at least two weeks after exposure or symptoms have subsided or I have returned from a highly impacted area.  In addition, if I discover I have been exposed to a suspected or positive case of COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19, I will notify the USMS coach or club administrator immediately.

It's tempting to chat when we are on deck even before we’ve put on a mask. Keep it safe!

Virtual Team Challenge

Coach Shelly is hatching a plan for us to complete a virtual swim in 2021. Details are being finalized and will be shared on deck (and in email) this week. Track your warm-up and cool-down yardage and let Shelly know each day.



Chinooks News – January 2021

Practice Schedule 2021 USMS Smarty Pants Vitamins Fitness Challenges

Good job to everyone who completed the Fall 2020 Fitness Challenge to swim One Mile (or 1650 yards) – and bonus kudos to those who took on the traditional November challenge of completing a Brute Squad set by adding a 400 I.M. and 200 Butterfly to it.

2021 Fitness Series stickers have already been ordered and delivered. Next challenge is the Winter Fitness Challenge of a 30-minute swim between February 1-15.

2021 U.S. Masters Swimming Membership RENEWAL and Moscow Chinooks DUES – JANUARY 1

To participate with the Moscow Chinooks you must be a current U.S. Masters Swimming member so that we can rent the UIdaho Swim Center. Please renew your membership at 

While you are doing that, please double check all your contact info and communication preferences. Can’t remember if you renewed already? Check this list.

Dues for Chinooks are still a low $100/trimester ($65 students) and the Spring Trimester fee is due January 4th/5th.

It is also a good time of year to make sure your profile info in our Club Assistant club management is up to date. You can log in at (use the Forgot Password link if you need). If you prefer credit card payment over checks, you can set up a credit card under your profile (see guide pictures). Checks are free to the Chinooks - make payable to MCM or Moscow Chinooks. Credit cards will be billed each cycle until you ask us to put your membership on hold (not something you can do yourself.) Ask Paige if you have questions as this feature is relatively new.

Chinooks News - November 2020

Time to Renew with USMS!

Most of us have U.S. Masters Swimming memberships that expire on Dec. 31 and the membership renewal period for 2021 is now open. Check your email for a personalized email with a personalized link to renew, or go to

Those of you who joined USMS after May 1 have a membership that continues through 2021. You'll see your membership automatically renew in the next 60 days.

3000/6000-yard Postal Event - Kroc Center, CdA on Sunday 11/7 1-3PM

The Kroc Masters in CdA are hosting an opportunity for masters swimmers in our area to swim the 3000-yd or 6000-yd ePostal National event. There are a lot of limits on people swimming at their pools (if at all) so this is a nice offer for a chunk of time to do these longer events. 

Contact Coach Mike Hamm at if you would like to reserve a spot in a lane.

Thanksgiving Break Practice Times

Looks like we are good to swim at regular practice times Mon-Tue-Wed of Thanksgiving week.

No Practice on Thanksgiving or on Black Friday (11/26 & 27)

USMS Fall Fitness Challenge - Tue 11/17 and Wed 11/18

It's a One Mile Challenge this fall and we'll be taking it on the 17th at evening practice and the 18th at morning practice.

You can support the USMS Covid-19 Relief Fund by signing up to take the challenge at The cost is $12 and there's some cool swag.

Plus you want to complete your 3-sticker Fitness Challenge set!

Let Coach Shelly or Paige know if you have any questions. Email is best as we limit time on deck. Thanks!