Swim, Drink, Fish- My City: Swim Drink Fish artists to pay tribute to Canada’s first urban swimming pier.

July 26, 2019 -

Toronto and Kingston - Filmmaker Finn O’Hara and poet Tanis Rideout are celebrating our waters with a collaboration of poetry, urban swimming and the vision of rethinking the way we look at water in our cities, with their video Swim, Drink, Fish- My City.

The release of the video comes on the first anniversary of the unveiling of the Gord Edgar Downie Pier. Canada’s first natural open-water swimming pier. The Gord Edgar Downie Pier has changed the City of Kingston’s waterfront. Thousands of residents and visitors have flocked to the water since the renovation of Breakwater Park, changing the way cities view their waterfronts and the way people connect to water.

The Swim Drink Fish movement is about communities empowering people to protect their water. Finn O’Hara and Tanis Rideout show that the hearts of cities thrive off the connection we have with our water. By celebrating the first birthday of the Gord Edgar Downie Pier, we celebrate what it means to swim freely in our lakes, rivers and oceans. 

Swim Drink Fish is a Canadian charity working for a swimmable, drinkable, fishable future since its launch in 2001. By blending science, law, education, and storytelling with technology, Swim Drink Fish empowers millions of people to know and safeguard their waters. 


“Too often we forget the deep connection between our communities and our Lakes. Every Great Lake City is linked to its fresh water for drinking, health and enjoyment. The best way to strengthen that link and protect the power of our place is to keep our waters safe for recreational water. Through videos like Finn and Tanis’ and initiatives like Swim Guide, we’re connecting people to water and keeping them informed about recreational water quality.”

– Mark Mattson, President and Waterkeeper, Swim Drink Fish

Quick Facts

  • The Gord Edgar Downie Pier was officially unveiled during the re-opening ceremonies of Breakwater Park on July 26th, 2018.

  • In June of 2017 Kingston City Council voted unanimously to name the renovated PUC Dock after Lake Ontario Waterkeeper/SDF Canada board member and Kingston native Gord Downie in honour of his work to connect people to water.

  • The Gord Edgar Downie Pier is Canada’s first urban natural swimming pier.

  • The W. Garfield Weston Foundation, City of Kingston, Provincial and Federal governments all came together to fund the Gord Edgar Downie Pier.


Video credit instructions: “courtesy Swim Drink Fish”



Matt Brown
Communications Manager
Swim Drink Fish
Mobile: 416-671-3910
Office: 416-861-1237 ext 6288

Matt Brown