CAPE MAY COURT HOUSE — Plunging into frigid ocean waters with nothing more than a bathing suit on is not necessarily something that a person would do willingly — unless, of course, you are one of thousands of participants taking part in the plunges planned in Cape May County in the next four months.
Whatever your reason is to willfully run into a cold ocean, there are some benefits, both entertaining and charitable, to taking the plunge.
Sea Isle City
How about getting together with friends? The Polar Bear Plunge in Sea Isle City is set for Feb. 15-17. Revelers have been taking the bitter cold dip in the ocean waters of Sea Isle for more than 25 years. It is not all about the plunge on this third weekend in February. There is plenty to do.
The official plunge will take place Saturday, Feb. 16, on the beach between 38th and 40th streets. Festivities will begin with a costume contest noon at LaCosta Complex at JFK Boulevard and Landis Avenue. The Plunge follows at 2 p.m. See lacosta-seaisle.com or seaislechamber.com.
Sea Isle’s plunge weekend ends on a charitable note noon Sunday, Feb. 17, with Mike’s Seafood 5K Run and 1.5-Mile Fun Walk for Autism on the city’s promenade. Registration will take place 9 a.m. at LaCosta. Pre-registration is available at polarbearrunwalkforautism.com.
For some participants, plunging for a charitable cause makes the dip into the freezing temperatures of the Atlantic Ocean a little more doable. One such event is the Fallen Heroes Plunge, which helps to raise funds for families of police officers lost in the line of duty.
Fallen Heroes Plunge weekend is Feb. 22-23 in North Wildwood. The official plunge takes place 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 23, at 16th Street and the beach. Weekend activities also include a pizza party Friday, Feb. 22, and a post-plunge party at Keenan’s Irish Pub, 113 Olde New Jersey Ave. at noon on Saturday, Feb. 23. Participants can preregister at fallenheroplunge2019 or on the day of the plunge at the 15th Street Lifeguard Station beginning at 8:45 a.m. See FallenHeroPlunge.com.
Stone Harbor’s Shiver Weekend, set for March 15 and 16, invites plungers to take a frigid dip in the ocean to benefit Family Promise of Cape May County, a charity that supports and counsels homeless parents and children and works to get them into permanent homes.
The Stone Harbor Chamber of Commerce has planned a weekend of events beginning Friday night at the Pre-Shiver Party at The Reeds at Shelter Haven, 96th Street and Third Avenue. For a $20 entry fee, enjoy a delicious buffet, a cash bar and a gift auction.
Fred’s Tavern will host a Kegs & Eggs breakfast on Saturday, March 16, before the plunge. Plungers will receive a Shiver swag bag that includes a Shiver tee or hoodie and are encouraged to wear costumes and/or create a float to commemorate the Shiver. A deejay will even play a theme song at participants' request. Activities will begin at noon at the parking lot at 96th Street and the beach. The official plunge begins at 1:15 p.m. After the plunge, it is back to Fred’s Tavern, 314 96th St., for a post-Shiver party. See stoneharborbeach.com to register for the Shiver and find a list of activities for the weekend.
In Ocean City, event organizers put a twist on the traditional ocean plunge. The Business Persons Plunge, as it is called, requires that participants wear business attire and carry a brief case. Rather than jumping in, participants march into the ocean from the shoreline at the beginning of Memorial Day Weekend to celebrate the opening of the ocean. The Business Persons Plunge takes place noon Friday, May 24, at Moorlyn Terrace and the beach. See oceancityvacation.com.