Darian Kovacs (left) and Caedmon Kovacs have been doing the Fort Langley polar bear swim since it started. Miranda Fatur Black Press

Langley and Aldergrove celebrate the New Year with a cold splash

The Fort Langley polar bear swim and Aldergrove Polar Bear Plunge drew large crowds.

Fortunately there was no snow on the ground this year for those daring to take a plunge at one of Langley’s polar bear swims to celebrate the start of the year on Jan. 1.

But despite a lack of snow, it was still a chilly day to take a dip in the Fraser River, as participants in the annual Fort Langley Polar Bear Swim were out of the water just as fast as they jumped in.

The temperature on the shore was around 4 degrees when swimmers started the countdown and went for the plunge.

“Let’s make it happen,” said first-time participant Shawn Dyer, minutes before jumping in.

“It’s great to burst into the New Year with a splash,” added Andy Crowder.

The plunge took place on the sandy shores of Brae Island Beach on the Bedford Channel.

Six years ago, Darian Kovacs, the founder of Jelly Marketing took a polar bear plunge with just a few friends, and the tradition has since grown on its own.

“There was just a few of us and then it evolved. The community is a really great community in Fort Langley. People got word of it and thought they’d join in as well. The more the merrier,” added Kovacs, who dressed for the plunge in a banana costume.

Compared to past swims where there’s been snow and ice, Kovacs added this year’s sunny afternoon swim was “gorgeous.”

The event is unofficial and casually organized, so there is no registration fees or sponsors.

MORE PHOTOS: Fort Langley Polar Bear Swim

Over in Aldergrove, brave adults and children also took a cold dip for the first annual Polar Bear Plunge held at the Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre’s Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience pool.

Guests took part in a brand new tradition of jumping into the outdoor wave pool in a simulated “ocean experience,” explained Township Recreation Centre Supervisor Nikole Longhi.

“It was a great success. We had over 80 people come and take the plunge,” added Longhi.

Swimmers in Aldergrove lingered a little longer than those in Fort Langley, as the Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience opened their hot tub for the event, and served hot chocolate.

“It’s unique given the environment we’re in,” added Longhi.

The Township plans to make the Polar Bear Plunge an annual event.

MORE PHOTOS: Aldergrove Polar Bear Plunge

 

Marcelle Larouche was brave enough to take a polar dip. Miranda Fatur Black Press

A couple of friends dove into the chilly waters of the Fraser River together. Miranda Fatur Black Press

Aldergrove host their first annual Polar Bear Plunge at the Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience wave pool. Miranda Fatur Black Press

Just Posted

Sources Langley Food Bank can’t find a home

Lanflords don’t want to rent to the food bank and time is running out

Vancouver Giant named to Western Conference first-tier all-star team

Young hockey defenceman Bowen Byram is once again lauded for his outstanding efforts on the ice

Giants begin playoff run in Langley tonight

With one win and a loss last weekend, the G-Men now top the Western Conference

WATCH: Langley Glow events denied permission to run

Darvonda Nurseries received a notice from the ALC on March 5.

Arrest and prohibition part of RCMP-CN police education exercise.

Tickets were issued and violations observed, although the focus was to educate drivers.

VIDEO: Restaurant robots are already in Canada

Robo Sushi in Toronto has waist-high robots that guide patrons to empty seats

Police watchdog investigating after man falls out third-storey window in Vancouver

The man fell to the ground and was taken to hospital with serious injuries

Cheetahs will not prosper in Creston: Permit rejected for two big cats

Earl Pfeifer owns two cheetahs, one of which escaped in December 2015

GM announces jobs, electric vehicle after Trump criticism

The company says it will spend $300 million at its plant in Orion Township

Trucker who caused Broncos crash likely to be deported: lawyer

The Crown has asked that Sidhu serve 10 years in prison

China chemical plant blast kills 47, injures hundreds more

This is one of China’s worst industrial accidents in recent years

Montreal priest stabbed while celebrating morning mass

The incident happened Friday morning at Montreal’s St. Joseph’s Oratory

Organic Matters tea recalled across B.C. due to Salmonella

Recall for OM tea products is B.C. wide, possibly national.

Real-life tsunami threat in Port Alberni prompts evacuation updates

UBC study says some people didn’t recognize the emergency signal

Most Read