Countdown to the New Years Day Coney Island Polar Bear Swim
The countdown begins to the start of 2020; with that comes the annual New Years Day Coney Island Polar Bear Club swim. Founded in 1903, you can find the C.I. Polar Bear Club on the boardwalk entrance of West 10th every Sunday from November through April at 1pm. No matter how cold the weather gets, you will always find members of the club out swimming every Sunday.
Tuesday, January 1st, marks their annual New Years Day swim where they welcome anyone who wants to join in on the fun. Through the years, the New Years Day swim with the C.I Polar Bear Club has gained in popularity. It has attracted thousands of non polar bear members who participate and a huge fan base who watch the event first hand. If you do plan on attending expect to see musical performances, large crowds and thousands of people taking a plunge into the frigid water.
I had the opportunity to interview some of the members this past week. I even summed up the courage to go in with them. Some advice they gave for new comers like me and for those who are also looking to participate in this years New Years Day swim were: when I asked “how do you prepare for such a cold swim?” They all replied “They don’t hesitate, they just go for it.” I also learned that there is NO fee to register for the New Years Day swim. They do however, encourage donations. This year, the Coney Island Polar Bear Club is raising money for local charities. Some of these charities consist of the Alliance for Coney Island, New York Aquarium, Coney Island USA and the Coney Island History Project. To Register today, simply go to www.PolarBearClub.org!