More than 800 swimmers and their families will travel to the region this weekend for the Illinois YMCA State Short Course Swimming Championships. The Championships will return to Lake Central High School in St. John for the third year.

Races will begin on March 18 at 8:00 a.m. and continue through March 19 starting at 8:00 a.m.; final races will take place at 5:30 p.m. both days. Springfield YMCA hosts this year's event.

Both boys and girls will be competing in the annual Short Course Swimming. This event will have an economic impact of more than $50,000. Visitors to the region will stay in local hotels, eat at restaurants and often visit a nearby attraction or shopping center.

Lake Central High School is located at 8400 Wicker Avenue in St. John. The pool can be accessed through the new aquatics center just south of the fieldhouse. Lake Central hosts a number of championships and swim meets at their aquatic center throughout the year.