No, not the actual majestic Snow Bear, a thousand pounds of furious hunger and sleek white fur, but the human kind, those who celebrate the New Year with a plunge in the ocean on an icy day to mark
NATIONAL POLAR BEAR DAY!
The Polar Bear Club doesn’t have any actual Polar Bears as members, just a bunch of delightfully eccentric humans who gather on the seashore at Brooklyn’s Coney Island on New Year’s Day for a nice refreshing swim in the frigid waters of the Atlantic, not exactly everyone’s idea of a day at the beach.
The world’s oldest winter bathing club, founded in 1903, the famous Coney Island Polar Bear Club has become popular enough to not only gather a major turnout in Coney Island every January 1st, but to have associated chapters spring up in other US cities as well as Canada (a natural), Great Britain and The Netherlands.
It’s all in good fun and makes for some loopy newspaper photos on January 2, and loopy newspaper pictures are always a good thing.
•Suggested Activities: Shivering, chattering of teeth, hypothermia