UVic Scuba Club president Colten Platzner

UVic Scuba Club president Colten Platzner

Scuba club goes down for beaches

24-hour shallow dive aiding a deep cause

Outside the University of Victoria, two students in full dry suits and air tanks chat about the importance of preserving beach access.

A middle-aged man ambles up to the table where they sit and looks quizzically at the two.

“Those don’t look like security uniforms,” the man says, waiting on an explanation for the out-of-place attire.

“We’re prepared for any situation,” says Colten Platzner, president of the UVic Scuba Dive Club.

Platzner and fellow club member Paul Van Dam Bates are sporting the suits to promote the group’s upcoming fundraiser for The Land Conservancy.

The scuba club is hosting Going Down for Beaches: a shallow dive for a deep cause. The around-the-clock dive relay will support TLC’s Wild Hills and Beaches campaign.

“They have a 24-hour relay for running, and I thought, why not do it for diving?” Platzner says.

He and Van Dam Bates, who take advantage of public beach access across Greater Victoria, want to help TLC reach its goal of protecting 5,800 acres of West Coast wilderness, which includes places such as the Jordan River coastline.

They and other divers from the 80-member club will lead games in the dive tank in UVic’s McKinnon Pool and offer demonstrations over a 24-hour period, starting at 3 p.m. on March 18.

Anyone who would like to pull on some dive gear and try scuba in a safe environment with a certified instructor may do so, in exchange for at $30 donation to TLC.

For those with more experience, the pool will also be the site of an underwater Olympics and poker.

Land activities are planned as well, with plenty of food, trivia and talks on tap throughout the event.

UVic, now home to a TLC Outreach Club, hosted Beers for Beaches at campus pub Felicitas in January. The event, which included musical performances by local bands Maurice and Rocky Mountain Rebel Music, raised $4,000 for Wild Hills and Beaches. The scuba club hopes to match that total.

Platzner, who instructs first-time divers, says for most people, trying scuba is relatively stress-free.

“It’s comforting,” Van Dam Bates adds. “You feel like you’re in your own personal bubble.”

Contact scuba@uvic.ca for more details.


Just Posted

VicPd are asking for the public’s help in finding Camper, a lost pit bull who ran away after their owner’s van was reportedly attacked by a man with a hammer on June 12. (Courtesy of VicPD)
Edmonton man reportedly smashes van’s windows with hammer while woman and her dog inside

VicPD are asking for help to find Camper, the woman’s dog who ran away during the Friday incident

Red arrow shows the existing warehouse that is home to a variety of specialized equipment used by the Capital Region Emergency Services Telecommunications (CREST). The service provider is looking for a new home that will protect the equipment in the event of an earthquake or other natural disaster. (Google Maps)
CREST telecoms look to find a post-seismic facility in Greater Victoria

The move will better protect equipment vital to its 50 emergency service clients across the CRD

A temporary urgent and primary care centre will open in Esquimalt this week, offering residents more health care options in their own community. (Black Press Media file)
Esquimalt’s temporary urgent and primary care centre to open Monday

The Esquimalt Health Unit will house the temporary site, permanent location opening in December

(Black Press Media file photo)
FRESH AND LOCAL: Greater Victoria farm markets ready to greet shoppers

A list of markets on the go this spring and summer, right into fall

A client and a staff member embark on an art project at Oak Bay United Church. (Christine van Reewyk/News Staff)
VIDEO: Oak Bay group of adults with developmental disabilities promotes community inclusivity

Victoria Community Connections moved to Oak Bay late last year

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read