Tuesday, January 01, 2008

The Polar Plunge -Excelsior Bay Center / Lake Minnetonka

Minnetonka Polar Plunge founders:  "What were we thinking?"
We used to call them "choppers"; Fat, ochre colored, fleece lined leather mittons. The "Plunge" crowd of spectators were all sporting these gloves or their contemporary conterparts. When the frigid gathering went to applaud, a low thudding rumble was all you could hear.
The first "Polar Bears" were greeted with this muffled applause, and a sharp icy wind. (I know that I was surprized by the intensity of the cold). Next they were shocked into looks of absolute panic as they plunged into the water,- happily climbing out a few yards later.
I am always a queezy about any 20 second event that requires a staff from the Excelsior Fire Department AND the Hennepin County Rescue Squad.
The crowd was congenial but bundled-up to the point of anonymity. I do not think the waves of shivering particiants set any records for numbers. They declared Excelsior "The Winter Plunge Capitol of the World". Well earned, if not wisely earned.

Later Note: 689 Plungers set a World Record!


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