Brrring in 2013 with a Polar Bear Plunge; Here Are 2 to Choose From

Last year’s Burien plunge winner, Isaac Chrisman, visiting from Idaho. Photo by Michael Brunk.

Brrring in 2013 by participating in a local Polar Bear Plunge, which can be a great, fun, “cleansing” tradition to start the new year on Tuesday, Jan. 1.

While we haven’t yet heard of any plunges planned in White Center, here are two other local events you can choose from (maps below):

Burien’s annual Polar Bear Plunge will be at Noon on New Year’s Day in the 3500 block of SW 172nd Street in the Three Tree Point neighborhood.

Swimmers are advised to show up at least 15 minutes early, as parking is limited in this area (it’s best to try and park on the bottom of Maplewild Ave SW then walk down SW 172nd to the plunge zone).

West Seattle’s Polar Bear Plunge is set for 10 a.m. sharp at Alki Beach on Jan. 1. Swimmers meet across from Duke’s Chowder and Christos restaurants on Alki.

Last January, Ufkes told us there were about 325 swimmers. Swimmers gather at 9:45 a.m., fan out into a long line along Alki beach, hold hands, and then, with a loud cheer, run together into Puget Sound sharply at 10 a.m.

“It is a great way to wash away the complexities of the previous year, and celebrate the unlimited potential that awaits each of us in the new year,” said Mark Ufkes. “On January 1, 2013, West Seattle will attempt to reach 1,000 swimmers participating in a Seattle area Polar Bear swim.”

Traditionally, Duke’s restaurant generously provides free clam chowder and local families bring hot chocolate for the crowd. Afterwards, Alki beach is full of hundreds of smiling swimmers and their families and friends.

For either event, swimmers are advised to bring a good towel, water shoes and dry clothes to change into.

And the Weather Peeps are forecasting “Partly sunny, with a high near 41” that day. Water temps are usually around 45 or so degrees, which means that oftentimes the water is warmer than the air. Perfect!

If you’ve never plunged, but want to see what it’s like, just check out some videos of the Burien event below, shot and produced by Publisher Scott Schaefer, and featuring our exclusive, waterproof “Polar Bear Plunge POV” cam:

From 2012:

From 2011:

From 2010:

From 2009:

Also, here are some great pics shot by Jana Kleitsch of past year’s plunges at Three Tree Point:

We’ll see ya there!

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