Three Decades of
The Chicago Smelts is Chicago's predominantly gay and lesbian U.S. Masters swim team, encouraging fitness, friendship, community and competition through swimming. Membership is open to everyone, including gay-friendly straight swimmers. Founded in 1988, the team currently has a roster of nearly 150 swimmers from around Chicago and includes athletes of all abilities ranging from beginners to triathletes to former college superstars.
Our Mission Statement
As a mostly gay and lesbian swim club belonging to Illinois Masters Swim Association, the Chicago Smelts foster an atmosphere of camaraderie where swimmers of all abilities can participate in organized team workouts, train and compete. Through social events and community service, the team promotes personal growth and pride for all its members.
The Chicago Smelts is a friendly, social team that welcomes swimmers of all stripes. If you are new to swimming, the Smelts provide a great opportunity for you to get acclimated to swimming with other beginners. If you're a former swimmer, a fitness swimmer or a triathlete getting in shape for the summer, come to a couple practices and give us a try.