Thursday, December 24, 2015

Polar Plunging Into The New Year!

Long Lake residents and visitors take part in the annual Polar Bear Plunge at the town beach in Long Lake, NY.After a month of hearing about Christmas lists and about what my children want, I’m turning their focus to what other people need.

It’s always nice to start the New Year off thinking about someone other than ourselves.

New Year’s traditions can start with the stereotypical glass of champagne at midnight or singing “Auld Lang Syne,”  but when the next day rolls around I want my children to do something to pull themselves out of the “me,me,me” and help benefit their neighbors or the charity of their choice.

One chilly way to make the point come across is one of these three Adirondack Polar Plunges in Lake George, Speculator and Long Lake.

According to Jackie Baker of Duffy’s Tavern, registration for the Lake George Polar Plunge starts at Duffy’s on New Year’s Eve from 11 am -4 pm and starts up again on New Year’s day at 10:30 am. Lake George participants will meet up at Shepard’s Park Beach for a 1 pm start on January 1st. Speculator’s Polar Plunge also takes place on the first of the year where participants will enter the chilly Adirondack waters at the noon time fire station signal.

Those braving the waters of Long Lake are given a one day reprieve and take to the icy waters near the Long Lake Town Beach on January 2nd at 1 pm. The “Feelin’ Long Lakey” Polar Plunge supports a cause that is close to my heart, The Wounded Warrior Project. Since 2012 Long Lake residents and visitors have taken the plunge in support of injured veterans and their families. This year they hope to break a record and be able to raise an additional $4,000 to benefit Wounded Warrior Project for an amazing $20,000 grand total since the event’s inception.

I’m not sure how my children have decided to turn this year’s “getting” into “giving.” We’ve started the discussion and will continue it through the holidays. It may be a Polar Plunge, a fun run or simply a trip to the food pantry. However your family finds balance during the holidays, I hope you have a Merry Christmas!

Photo of the Long Lake Polar Plunge provided by the Town of Long Lake.

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Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

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