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Polar Bear Plunge (Photos)

2012 Polar Bear Plunge-14142812

Hundreds of polar bear plungers brave the cold to take place in the annual Polar Bear Plunge in Wildwood, NJ each year.  PHL17 is a huge fan of both Polar Plungers and the Special Olympics so we do lots of photo coverage of these events.  (Proceeds from the Polar Bear Plunge benefit the Special Olympics.) We also get to Polar Bear Plunges in Eastern, PA.  Use the links below to check out Polar Bear Plunge photos and Polar Bear Videos from PA and NJ.

PHOTOS: 2014 Polar Bear Plunge Wildwood, NJ

PHOTOS: 2013 Polar Bear Plunge Eastern PA

PHOTOS: 2013 Polar Bear Plunge Wildwood NJ

PHOTOS: 2012 Polar Bear Plunge Wildwood NJ

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The 8th Annual Wildwood Polar Bear Plunge took place on January 18, 2014 on the frosty beach behind the beautiful Wildwood Convention Center.  The over 900 plungers consisted of teams and individuals many in costume. Avengers, animals, vikings, Reno 911, even Ace and Gary the Ambiguously Gay Duo,  but as always, PHL17 had a soft spot for those dressed in Mummers gear donated to the plungers by Cara Liom New Year’s Wench Brigade.  Air Temps were in the 30s, wind chill in the 20s and the ocean was a chilly 37 with rough seas and cloudy skies that helped us get great Polar Bear Plunge Photos of the 2014 event. (Photos below.)  If you post photos of your own today, use these hashtags; #plunge, #pbp, #polarbearplunge, #sonj, #genuinejerseypride, #GJP.

The plunge itself is over in the blink of an eye.  The 900 plungers race to the beach in a frenzy to get in, and subsequently out, of the freezing Atlantic Ocean.  What constitutes a “plunge” also varies.  Some go in to about the ankles, some the knee and some of the hardcore plungers would still be in the water if not for safety personnel bringing them in. Can’t get enough Polar Plunge Photos?  Check out our BONUS GALLERY below.


To be eligible to plunge, each polar plunger must raise $100.  The popularity of the Wildwood Plunge has turned the January Plunge one of the top single day fundraising event for the Special Olympics of NJ.  The 2014 total was $188,115, second only to Seaside Heights NJ total.  Top Earners and Teams included: Raymond Carr IV, Gary Evangelista, Don Rambo, Andy Hoglen, Leslie MacDonald, Salem County FOP, American Legion 184, Piggy Park Plungers, Delran FOP 230, Cape May and County FOP Lodge 7.  In addition to the respect and admiration from your peers, being a top donor can land you cool Polar Plunge swag.

Please visit the Wildwood, NJ Tourism site for more great events at the Convention Center and Special Olympics of NJ for other events and fundraisers.

  PNBR Cupidsubway

Web Exclusive

VIDEO: 2014 Polar Bear Plunge from Wildwood NJ

Check out more more content from the Polar Bear Plunge:

PHOTOS: 2014 Polar Bear Plunge

BONUS PHOTOS: 2014 Polar Bear Plunge 


2014 Polar Bear Plunge Wildwood NJ

Sometimes we take so many great photos at an event?  We publish a bonus gallery. And this is it for 2014 Polar Bear Plunge!  Please don’t miss the first gallery as it’s got the best of the best 2014 Polar Plunge Photos. (Photos below.)  If you post photos of your own today, use these hashtags; #plunge, #pbp, #polarbearplunge, #sonj, #genuinejerseypride, #GJP.

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The fifth-annual Eastern Polar Bear Plunge was held on February 23, 2013 at Neshaminy State Park.  Almost one thousand polar bear plungers braved the cold temperatures and steady rain to take a frosty dip in the Delaware River. Each participant raised a minimum of $50, (teams $500) and the event raised over $150,000 for the Special Olympics.  Photos below.

In addition to the plunge, participants and spectators were entertained with lots of coffee, donuts and music by sponsors 94 WIP and Dunkin’ Donuts.  The highlight of the pre-plunge festivities was the costume contest, won handily by Team Simpsons.  Photos Below.

About Special Olympics Pennsylvania
Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) provides year-round training and competition in 22 Olympic-type sports to nearly 20,000 children and adults with intellectual disabilities or closely related developmental disabilities. For more information about how to be a fan, visit

More Photo and Video from other Polar Bear Plunges pol_arc

My involvement with Special Olympics began when I was a news anchor in Montana.  Since then I’ve been very fond and proud of what the Special Olympics community achieves.  Here in Philadelphia I’ve covered the Special Olympics Pennsylvania Fall Festival at Villanova University — the largest annual student-run Special Olympics event in the world.  When I was asked to participate in the Polar Bear Plunge for Special Olympics in Wildwood, I  didn’t hesitate to bare it all for such a great cause.  Although the water had no mercy, it was totally worth the thrill!  Join me again me again in February 23 in Long Branch, NJ!

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Click here for more photos from 2013 Polar Bear Plunge.


Polar Bear Plungers racing into the Atlantic Ocean on January 19th.

Over 900 “plungers” took to the beaches of Wildwood, NJ to participate in the annual Polar Bear Plunge.  As always, the 2013 Polar Bear Plunge benefited Special Olympics.  Considering how cold it can be in January in NJ, it could have been worse for the participants, temperatures hit the mid 40s and water temp was a cool 45 degrees, although wind gusts of up to 20mph reminded everyone it was in fact winter. While there are many polar plunges of this kind nationwide, Wildwood is one of the biggest in terms of participation and funds raised for Special Olympics.  (Wildwood Polar Bear Plunge photos below.)

Polar plunging is a social event and great for tailgate and plunger watching.  As you can see from the photos, the Wildwood Polar Bear Plunge can be a team sport and organizers encourage teams of 10 or more.    A team from Mantua, NJ brought a full size polar bear attached to their car, other teams dressed as Avengers or other super heroes, some dressed as Mummers– but my favorite team was the team below that consisted of a family that was plunging for a member of their family deployed in Afghanistan.  (Thank you Team SSgt Jenkins and thank you SSgt Jenkins!).

With the 7th Annual Wildwood Polar Bear Plunge in the books, the event has now surpassed the one million dollar mark in funds raised for Special Olympics.  Each participant is required to raise $100 dollars and each team is required to raise $1000.

For more information regarding the Special Olympics Wildwoods’ Polar Bear Plunge please call 609-896-8000 or visit  For more information regarding the Special Olympics New Jersey please visit For additional information about the Wildwoods, visit or call 800-992-9732.

Related items:

Polar Bear Plunge 20122012 Polar Plunge Photo Archive

Wildwood, NJ–  Hundreds of polar bear plungers braved the cold January temperatures to take place in the annual Polar Bear Plunge in Wildwood, NJ. In all, over 750 participants braved water temps in the low 40s and wind chill in the teens. Proceeds from the Polar Bear Plunge benefit the Special Olympics.

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