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Xiangjiang swimmers brave cold in Mao's memory

Updated: 2016-12-28

 
Hardy winter swimmers jumped into Hunan's Xiangjiang River to celebrate the 123rd birthday of Mao Zedong (1893-1976) on Dec 26.

 

Mao, as one of the founders of the Communist Party of China, holds a special place in the hearts of the Hunanese on account of having been born and raised in the Hunan village of Shaoshan. The core figure of New China's first generation leadership was a passionate swimmer and would often swim in the Xiangjiang River in his youth for exercise.

 

More than 200 winter swimming enthusiasts from around Hunan province cross the Xiangjiang River to celebrate the 123rd birthday of Mao Zedong on Dec 26. [Photo/Hunan Daily]

 

To properly commemorate this prominent figure in Chinese history, more than 200 swimmers took the plunge. The event took place at Orange Island, a scenic spot often frequented by Mao in his student days.

 

Swimmers braved the gusty breeze and 4C water temperature and crossed the 600 meter course to Xiangjiang Fengfan Square. All participants were out of the water in less than 20 minutes.

 

Event organizers hope the activity will serve the dual function of keeping the memory of Mao alive and promoting fitness and sport for local residents.

 

Winter swimming enthusiasts hold a portrait of Mao Zedong to keep the memory of the prominent Chinese figure alive. [Photo/Hunan Daily]

 

Source: Hunan Daily