Compete Network Feature Stories

My Sin City Classic Retrospective

Featured in our 2019 Sin City Classic issue!

My first experience at the Sin City Classic was in 2016. While I had heard of this multi-sport tournament, my sport of swimming wasn’t on the list. With many of my Denver friends going for volleyball, softball, flag football and other sports, I wanted to be part of it, too. But I didn’t want to fly to Las Vegas just to hold the purse. So I got in touch with that year’s festival director to suggest adding swimming to the sports list. Of course, he immediately responded with, “Are you interested in organizing the meet?” That was a big “HELL NO!” from me! I am a much better swimmer than I am an organizer. Fortunately, I had a friend who was perfect for the job. Long story short (and a billion emails later), the swimming pictograph suddenly appeared on the tournament website.

The Sin City Classic is where I’ve met many new people who have helped me get more involved with LGBTQI sports, including Eric Carlyle and his team at Compete Magazine and the Sports Diversity Leadership Council. I participated in swimming at Sin City in 2016 and 2017, both of which were amazing experiences. In addition to the swimming, I really loved taking in the whole “Vegas Experience” with the lights, the over-the-top spectacle of everything) and of course, the buffets.

Unfortunately, the swimming event was not held in 2018 but its returning this year for the 2019 Sin City Classic edition. Sadly, I won’t be in attendance this year either since I’m currently in Germany pursuing a graduate degree. Not only will I be missing out on the swimming but also taking part in the Sports Diversity Leadership Council as well as seeing many of my wonderful friends I’ve made. I will also be missing the fabulous Vegas experience, especially the opening party and the great overall energy of the event. In the context of the swimming season, the Sin City Classic falls right in the middle so it’s a more laid-back meet; one to just be able to relax and enjoy the fun. While I am not going to be there this year, I am looking forward to returning to the Sin City Classic in the next couple of years. Have a FABULOUS time everybody!

By Dirk Smith

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