Are You Taking the Plunge? The Polar Bear Plunge, That Is!
Celebrate New Year's with a plunge in the Atlantic
Have you ever braved a swim in the icy Atlantic on a winter's day? For Polar Bear enthusiasts, a plunge into the icy cold Atlantic Ocean is an annual New Year's tradition.
If you're looking to participate in a Polar Bear Plunge this year, here are more than a few to choose from on the Jersey Shore, or you can head to New York City and join the polar bears at Coney Island.
Please note, most Polar Bear Plunges are charity events with registration fees and/or minimum pledge amounts required.
Plunges in January and February
The Special Olympics holds the first of their two annual Polar Bear Plunges on January 12. The plunge happens at 1 pm near the Wildwood Convention Center.
Meet at 23 Ocean Ave. on February 9 for registration at 11 am and a plunge at noon, or for a chicken dip (where you only stick your toes in).
Celebrate Super Bowl Sunday in a fun way, with the 15th Annual Super Plunge Sunday on February 3 at 1 pm. Pre-registration required and there's a fee per participant ($30-35). Prizes will be awarded in a number of categories, including best costume. Plunge takes place at 1 pm. All proceeds benefit St. Francis Community Center & Southern Regional HS Swim Teams.
This polar bear plunge takes place on February 16, and is a costume contest as well. Meet at the Deck Bar at 8 am for registration. Plunge takes place at 2 pm. Judging takes place at 11:30 am. There are events like a Polar King and Queen crowning happening on Friday night if you want to make a weekend out of it.
The Special Olympics holds their second Polar Bear Plunge on February 23. Registration beings at 9 am and after a dramatic countdown, the plunge is at 1 pm.
And while it's not in New Jersey, there's always Coney Island, NY. Their Polar Bear Club (founded in 1903) is the oldest winter bathing organization, and holds swims every Sunday from November to April. Their New Year's Day the swim is open to the public. Meet on the Boardwalk at Stillwell Avenue, swim time is at 1 pm sharp. There's no fee to participate, but the plunge is raising funds for the Coney Island community, including the New York Aquarium, Alliance for Coney Island, Coney Island USA, Coney Island History Project and more.