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In 1961, Jim Moran, a car dealer in Chicago offered a $3675 prize for first swim from Chicago to Michigan City to 6 local swimmers. Ted Erikson of Chicago was only finisher.

Then in 1962 he offered a $3675 prize to first swimmer making Waukegan (same distance as MC along shoreline for better "viewing" potential) AND $10,000 to Kenosha. Dennis Matuch took Waukegan prize and Greta Andersen took $10K prize, followed by Ted Erikson who was given a token $1K.

In 1963, one $15K prize for first swimmer to go 60 miles from Chicago to Benton Harbor. Abo Heif of Egypt took the $15K prize followed by Ted Erikson who was given a token $1k.

Vicki Keith from Kingston, Ontario, Canada swam across Lake Michigan during the summer of 1988 as part of an event that saw her become the first person to swim across all five Great Lakes. She completed this task in a 2 month period and raised $548,000 to help kids with disabilities.

To date, Vicki hold's 16 world records in marathon swimming, and has raised over $1,000,000 to help develop programs for kids with physical disabilities.

A number of other people have swum across Lake Michigan, including a fellow Canadian Paula Stephanson, and American Jim Dreyer. Jim Dreyer is from Byron Center, MI. He crossed Lake Michigan in 1991, from Two Rivers to Ludington, and raised money for the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America mentoring program. He got involved with the program when he was in his 20s.

Jim Dreyer followed triathlon rules as opposed to marathon swimming rules and therefore wore a wet suit for his crossing. Wet suits are not permitted under the FINA marathon swimming rules, so although he was successful in the crossing, and was able to help kids in the Big Brothers and Big Sisters organization, his swim should not be compared with marathon swimmers like Vicki Keith and Paula Stephanson who follow marathon swimming rules and therefore wear only a bathing suit, and bathing cap and have their swims overseen by a marathon swimming governing body to ensure all rules are adhered to.

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โˆ™ 2010-09-19 15:21:33
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Q: Has anyone ever successfully swam across Lake Michigan?
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