Swim meet brings crowd to Kingsport

It's a competitive swim meet with more than 300 swimmers from five different states and it returns to the Tri-Cities after seven years.

News 5 caught up with some of the swimmers and coaches to find out what makes the Bank of Tennessee Model City Invitational so special.

A weekend aimed to highlight some of the best young swimmers around and to show off a state-of-the-art facility, the Kingsport Aquatic Center.

Swimmers and coaches agree.

"This is a really nice pool," says one of the swimmers.

"The facility is so much cleaner than everywhere else," says one Johnson City HS swimmer. "And it's so much more enjoyable to swim here."

"This facility is fantastic. It's been wonderful, but I will tell you what has set this meet apart as far as so outstanding have been the people," says a coach from Kentucky.

The people and sponsorships are what makes an invite like this happen. Bank of Tennessee hosted the meet and Senior Vice President of the bank Detra Cleven says, "it's also just a way to just celebrate Kingsport."

And a way to show people what the Tri-Cities has to offer.

"It brings in great for health and fitness but also brings in some economic impact to the community," adds Cleven.

After races, teams have the chance to go out and explore the city. Many stay at local hotels and eat at some of our local restaurants. Cleven says she hopes the invitational at the Kingsport Aquatic Center is here to stay.

"Some of the teams from out of the area have said 'we'd love to come back and we hope you do have this meet.' And that just brings more into the swim community," says Cleven.

For more information on hours of operation, special events or competitive swimming at the Kingsport Aquatic Center, you can go to their website:

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