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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – About 1,000 swimmers of all ages are competing over the next few days at the Huntsville Aquatics Center for USA Swimming’s Futures Championships.

Those with the highest scores from the southern region qualify to take on the top athletes from other regions in the junior and senior national championships. The end goal here is to be a stepping stone for the best of the best and provide a pathway for an eventual Team USA rout in a few years.

Sports Commission Executive Director Mark Russell says Huntsville has one of the top aquatic centers in the nation, with two Olympic-size pools for competition use and more than 1,400 seats available to spectators.

Russell says hosting the event is not only great publicity for the city, but it’s great for business too.

“There’s a huge economic impact. When you think 1000 swimmers, they bring their family with them, moms and dads, brothers and sisters, staying in our hotels, eating in our restaurants, we will be crowded,” he said.

The championships run through July 31, and the event is open to the public with the purchase of a ticket. To purchase tickets, click here.