Watching Hundreds take the Plunge

Posted 01/16/11
by Jane Kashlak

Wildwood, NJ — Oh baby it was cold out there. What a scene on the beach near Wildwood's convention hall Saturday.

Thousands of people were tromping across the sand, braving the bitter cold and bracing winds for one purpose: to watch hundreds of people strip to their bathing suits and dash into an icy cold ocean.

At exactly one o'clock, the mass of humanity charged towards the water.

When they got there, most didn't stay long.

Both the water and air temps hovered in the mid-30's - just above freezing. In fact, there was still some ice and snow on the sand.

People were streaming into and back out of the ocean at breakneck speed.

Of course, there are always a few who want to prove just how tough they are. Hey guys, the water temperature's 35 degrees.

You could see the pain on some faces and read the expressions - get me out of here.

The hundreds of polar plungers were doing all of this for a good cause - raising money for the New Jersey Special Olympics. From the size of the crowd, this looked like a banner year.

Then, just as quickly as it began, it was over. Everyone was back in their parkas, heading home for a hot bowl of soup.

Almost everyone.

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