Upcoming Polar Bear Swims from the Okanagan to Kamloops | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Upcoming Polar Bear Swims from the Okanagan to Kamloops

Kelowna Polar Bear Swim, 2015. (FILE PHOTO)

THOMPSON-OKANAGAN - If you want to kick off the New Year with a polar bear swim, there are several opportunities around the Okanagan, Shuswap and Kamloops areas to go for a dunk.

In Summerland, you can head to Sun-Oka Beach in Trout Creek on Jan.1. The event, put on by the Summerland Kinsmen Club, includes warming fires, hot chocolate, hot dogs and prizes for the best costumes and oldest and youngest dippers. Participants enter the water at noon, sharp. All proceeds go to local families and community projects.

Kelowna’s Polar Bear Dip happens Jan. 1 at Tug Boat Bay (by the Dolphins statue on Water Street). The dip is by donation in support of the Community Recreational Initiatives Society Adaptive Adventures. Participants are encouraged to come in their best outfits. Dippers hit the water at 2 p.m.

In the past, Vernon has had a polar bear swim on New Year’s Day at Kal Beach, but in recent years the event, which is in support of The Zimbabwe Project, has been held instead during the Vernon Winter Carnival in February. The event happens Feb. 12, 2017.

Those wanting to watch or participate in a Polar Bear Swim on New Year’s Day in the Vernon area can head to Kelowna, or the Shuswap River in nearby Enderby. That swim happens at 10 a.m. sharp at Belvedere Park. Registration is from 9 a.m. to 9:50 a.m., and participation is free ‘if you have the nerve.’

In the Salmon Arm area, head to the Canoe Beach Boat Launch on Jan. 1. Registration is from 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the beach, and the swim starts at 10:45 a.m. A $10 donation is requested and will go to the Canadian Diabetes Foundation.

In Kamloops, brave souls will gather at Riverside Park to plunge into the Thompson River at noon on Jan. 1. Donations can be made to the Kamloops Food Bank. Dippers are encouraged to form a team and dress in costume.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston or call 250-309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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