Public Speaking & Upcoming Events

I have been fortunate to work with business, organizations, and non-profits such as Amazon Outdoors, REI Co-Op’s Wild Ideas Worth Living, Seattle Times, UnitedHealth Group, King County Library, Northwest Maritime Center, Say Yes to Life Swims, Seattle Film Institute, Thinkspace, Boldly Went, and many more to promote and share the story of open water and ice swimming. In addition to the various publications, articles, print and video features, below lists various engagements and events I’ve had the privilege to speak at throughout my career.

Upcoming Events:

  • REI’s Wild Ideas Worth Living Podcast – Ice Swimming with Melissa Kegler: Join the launch of REI’s Uncommon Path feature podcast airing March 7th on everything icy! In the podcast, a partnership with REI, I talk about my specialization in cold water, long distance swims and my recent U.S. national distance record for IISA’s Ice Mile event. My goal goes beyond excelling in this extreme sport and discusses fostering an inclusive community focusing on body positivity and self-love.
  • Older Women Rule the Waves: Join Say Yes to Life Swims founder, Guila Muir, as astounding female swimmers over 60 take the stage. Guest speakers Liz Fry, Gina Harden, Sally Minty-Gravett, and Pat Gallant-Charette share their inspirational tales! This is a free webinar, March 16th, 11:00am-1:00pm PDT, advanced registration required. MKegler_Crop(2)

To request Melissa as a speaker or special guest for your event, use the Contact page.

Past Events:

  • Puget Soundkeeper – Cold Hands, Warm Heart (February 16) (February 2023): Join Puget Soundkeeper for good vibes and bracing conversation on all things cold water! During this panel discussion, you will hear from fearless local experts who swim, dive, and conduct research within and around Puget Sound. You’ll leave with a new perspective on exploring and protecting our marine environment, and an better understanding of what makes our frigid waters so special. I’ll be there along with Long Live the Kings marine ecologist Hem Nalini Morzaria Luna, and Seattle Dive Tour master diver trainer Dr. Kelly Bushnell. 
  • King County Library – Let’s Go Swim an Ice Mile! (February 21) (February 2023): Join me for an evening of icy fun at the Skyway Branch of King County Library where I’ll discuss safety for cold-water swimming, what the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming is, and more as I seek icier goals around the Puget Sound and the globe.
  • Amazon Outdoors – All About Ice Swimming (October 2022): In partnership with the Outdoors at Amazon community, we dive into the chilly world of Ice Swimming with Melissa Kegler. In January 2022, Melisa set the US Distance Record, male or female, for ice swimming. We will explore what Ice Swimming is, how Melissa got into this chilly sport, how to train for ice swimming when there isn’t ice around and how you warm up when you’re done!
  • Northwest Maritime Center – Below the Waterline (May 2022): Partnered with the Northwest Maritime Center to talk all things swimming and how it relates to the importance of good navigation as a part of the 7th Grader Maritime Discovery Program in Port Townsend, WA. The Campers and I discussed connection to the ocean, relationship with marine mammals, conservation of aquatic plants, and celebration of navigation through swimming.
  • Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame (August 2019): Induction ceremony for the Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame inducted eight individuals and several teams into the Class of 2019. The inductees, including Melissa Kegler, along with the Dick Letts Community Service Award winner was honored at the 44th annual Induction Dinner held at the Lansing Center July 2019.
  • Staudt on Sports (April 2019): Joining mid-Michigan sports icons, Tim Staudt and Bob Every, on The Game 730AM radio, Melissa talked about open water  swimming, growing up in Holt, and the Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame induction this coming July. Listen live on The Game 730AM website across the country or download the mobile app for future shows and replays!
  • Women of the Open Water 2 – Awakening the Dolphin Within (March 2019). What a privilege to host the amazingwow2 women on the panel, who shared their journey and knowledge with others. The discussion was vibrant and at times filled with the raw grit and emotion that comes with being a marathon swimmer. Helping others expand their minds and potential, tips and techniques where shared to help swimmers of all abilities achieve their dreams and athletic passions. Full video recap to come soon. Pre-event slideshow courtesy of Say Yes to Life Swims. Event recap published in the West Seattle Blog.
  • Thinkspace Grit+Resilience in Seattle (August 2018). I was super excited to speak about open water swimming, balancing professional success and personal passion, and how my journey to the Triple Crown parallels the entrepreneurialmeetup1 spirit at Thinkspace this past August. There are a lot of parallels between open water swimming at the sponsored level and being an entrepreneur. It as great to share and converse with others about the fear in beginning something new, something untested, and what is needed to build a successful brand. As always, it was fun, open and honest! Take a look at the event playback on the Thinkspace Facebook page!
  • Boldly Went, Outdoor Adventure 3 Ways (June 2017). I was thrilled to be selected to speak at the June Boldly Went show night and share my story, insights and motivation behind the pursuit of the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming. Watch the Boldly Went podcast to learn more about my Catalina Channel recap, lessons learned, and why open water marathon swimming, similar to many of our ultra endurance adventures, is much more than a solo event.
  • Women of the Open Water, A Panel Discussion (March 2017).  An amazing event hosted by Say Yes to Life Swims, thecp Northwest’s only business providing Escorted Open Water Swim Adventures, at C&P Coffee Company.  Watch the replay of the event on YouTube, learn about why we love water, our past experiences on our epic swims, and what we want people to know about why we swim. Four fantastic women, four unique swims, four individual perspectives. One love.                                     
  • 100×100 Swimtacular (December 2016): What an epic event, read blog post The 100x100s Swimtacular Fundraiser Recap: A Day of Smiles, Swimming and Friends to re-live all the excitement! THANK YOU to everyone who attended the swim, did satellite swims, or donated for my English Channel swim.  Swimtacular participants, satellite swimmers, deck support and donors include the amazing: Jeannie, Stacy, Paul, Trev, Drew, Steve, Carol, Ariel, Mel, Ryan, David Streams, Linda & Ed, Caitlin, John and Cindy, Stan, Rocky, Hana, Scott, Amy & Jeff, Lisa, Brian, Paul & Cara, Steve & Terri, Christine & Jeff, Amy, Lee-Lee, Guila, Andrew & Erika, Kate, Heidi, Daniel Henry, Mitchel, Ed, Kirsten, Jess, Anna, Becky, Brenda, Brittany, Shannon, Robert, Ray, Eric, Scot, Brian, Kristin, Kathy, Kelly & Tiff, Andrey & Belisa, Dan Rebecca, Deanna, and Matti.spectacular