Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Polar Bear Plunge in Provincetown Harbor Raises Funds for ASGCC Programs Throughout the Cape and Islands

115 people donned swimsuits for the Polar Bear Plunge in Provincetown Harbor on New Year's Day, captured
in this video by David A. Cox of droningprovincetown.com. Click the first link below to watch this film.

The Polar Bear Plunge has become part of Provincetown's First Light celebration, leading 115 very brave souls to run into the 45 degree waters of Provincetown Harbor for a momentary swim in this New Year's Day fundraiser for the AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod. Serving clients for well over 30 years, the ASGCC works to assure that comfort, care, housing and a variety of vital services are available in every corner of Cape Cod and the Islands to individuals and families affected by HIV/AIDS.
As in a number of other locations around the world, where folks will jump into a freezing cold river, lake, ocean or stream in a New Year's Day ritual, Provincetown has seen a number of folks take an icy holiday dip in various waters surrounding our town. But this year, the folks at Harbor Lounge, Yolk by 8 Dyer, and the 8 Dyer Hotel, had an idea…

Some of these "Polar Bears" dressed in hats or costumes.
They wanted to create a New Year's tradition that could raise money every winter for a number of local nonprofit organizations, so they decided they would launch, coordinate, orchestrate and promote the Polar Bear Plunge, and they chose the ASGCC to be the recipient of the money raised through this first officially organized fundraiser. We thank them for sponsoring this wonderful event.

Trampolina Glenellen, dancing with her trident, was a great cheerleader.
Participants began assembling on the beach at the Johnson Street parking lot around noon on Sunday, with a few hundred spectators gathering to cheer them on.
DJ Chris Racine was on hand, spinning tunes to get the crowd dancing.
At about 1 o'clock, when the tide was high, the signal was given and the swimmers ran into the calm but frigid water in Provincetown Harbor, most for mere moments, and then they turned and ran back out again just as quickly, each having happily paid a $45 registration fee for the privilege.

Put the Polar Bear Plunge on your First Light calendar for next year, register
early, and get the next commemorative T-shirt, celebrating your daring feat.
A party at Harbor Lounge followed the swim, where folks thawed out with cocktails and chili, and those who had registered early enough, by Dec 15th, got this year's official T-shirt.
All evidence shows that the whole affair was a great success, with a record number of swimmers taking the plunge while spectators gathered on the beach, on the decks at Pepe"s Wharf, and on the pier at Harbor Lounge, to get a good view of the fun and festivities.
Again, our thanks to 8 Dyer Hotel, Yolk by 8 Dyer and Harbor Lounge for sponsoring this terrific event. We encourage everyone to put the plunge on their calendars for New Year's Day 2018, register early, and support a local nonprofit while enjoying a fun afternoon and sharing in a growing Provincetown New Year's tradition.

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