Annual Polar Bear Plunge Rings In The New Year
Andrew Parker - January 3, 2020

Caged Bird

By Maya Angelou

The free bird leaps on the back of the wind and floats downstream till the current ends and dips his wings in the orange sun rays and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks down his narrow cage can seldom see through his bars of rage his wings are clipped and his feet are tied so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings with fearful trill of the things unknown but longed for still and his tune is heard on the distant hill for the caged bird sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn and he names the sky his own.

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream his wings are clipped and his feet are tied so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings with a fearful trill of things unknown but longed for still and his tune is heard on the distant hill for the caged bird sings of freedom.

Do you consider yourself to be a thrill-seeker? If so, then chances are that you have heard about the annual “Polar Bear” plunge. Each year thousands take an icy plunge into the new year during the event. The Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge is in its 116th year making it the oldest winter bathing event in the U.S. The event draws thousands of swimmers each year who raise money for different causes.

 

“It’s invigorating,” said veteran participant Laurie Ferguson, 38, who was taking her 10th dip in the annual New Year’s Day tradition.

 

Getty Images/News/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez

 

“It resets your year with something stupid,” she said, adding her friends thought she was nuts.

“All morning I heard it: ‘You’re crazy!” she said.

 

Temperatures reach 37 degrees Fahrenheit during the 1:00 pm plunge. One time the temperature reached a record low of 7 degrees in 2018.

 

Some swimmers chose to wear bikinis while others went in superhero costumes and Santa hats.

 

Well, that certainly is one way to ring in the new decade!