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Aquatics

Swimmers to get truly Canadian medal gifts at short-course worlds

Winners at the 13th FINA world short-course swimming championships this week in Windsor, Ont., will receive the most unique and most Canadian medal ceremony gift ever — Muskoka chairs.

Muskoka chairs to be presented to winners this week in Windsor, Ont.

Miniature Muskoka chairs to be presented to medal winners this week in lieu of flowers at FINA world short-course swimming championships in Windsor, Ont. (FINA Windsor 2016)

Winners at the 13th FINA world short-course swimming championships this week in Windsor, Ont., will receive the most unique and most Canadian medal ceremony gift ever — Muskoka chairs.

While flowers and the more recent Olympic trend of stuffed animals are customarily bestowed, the Canadians are breaking the mould with the miniature token that also doubles as a resting place for competition spoilage. 

The 3D red medal gifts that will accompany the official medals were designed by students at Vincent Massey Secondary School in Windsor, and revealed to the public last Tuesday. 

Also called Adirondack chairs, the water side staples were invented by American Thomas Lee in 1903 as an outdoor resting seat for tuberculosis patients living in a recovery home in the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York.  

Favoured in rural outdoor settings, the comfy seats were eventually adopted north of the border and coined their Canadian moniker from their association to the popular cottage community in Muskoka, Ont. 

The gifts will help commemorate the first time the world short-course swimming championships will be held on Canadian soil in the bi-annual events history.  

Also in true Canuck fashion, the world's best will be competing in a converted hockey rink at the WFCU Centre, home of the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey league. 

CBCSports.ca is live streaming the event from Tuesday to Sunday with the morning heats going at 9:30 a.m. ET, and the semifinals and finals at 6:30 p.m. ET.

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