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Calgary Polar Bear Dip 2016 is not for the faint of heart

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DH Calgary Staff Dec 15, 2015 8:00 am

If there’s any way to kick off a new year, it’s jumping into some ice cold water – at least that’s what some Calgarians will be doing at the fourth annual Calgary Polar Bear Dip.

Registration is now open for new dippers at the Calgary Ice Breaker website. If you took the dip in 2015, you don’t have to register again. As of December 13 they already have 26 registrants.

On January 1, participants will jump into a hole in the ice at the lake by the Elbow Valley Residents Club in SW Calgary, and there will be in-water helpers (in insulated suits) and shore support including emergency medical personnel and a lot of verbal encouragement!

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Tips for Polar Bear Dip day

1. Check out the message feed on the calgaryicebreaker.com home page to catch any late breaking news before leaving for the dip site.

2. Before leaving home:

  • Dress-up. There is a prize for the most original, outrageous Dipster outfit.
  • Wear an old pair of shoes or “aqua socks” to wear into the water to stop your feet from sticking to any snow or ice on the shore.
  • Bring a cover up, such as a parka or warm house coat, that you can keep on until you dip, and that you can put on quickly after the dip. Do not strip down to your costume or swim suit until it’s time for your dip.
  • This year they will have hot tubs, which are a short jaunt away (closer to the club house than the dipping spot). Bring a pair of flip flops or slippers if you are planning to use the hot tub. You will appreciate these to slip on when you get out of the hot tub to get into the clubhouse to change into dry clothes.
  • If you wear glasses, make sure to bring a strap to secure them so you do not lose them in the pond.

3. Arrive at the dip site by noon to ensure you have time to register. All dipsters will need to register.

4. Visit the registration table in the Elbow Valley Residents Club to:

  • Hand over your signed waiver form (if you haven’t already submitted it via email). Remember: They MUST have your signed waiver before you can take the dip.
  • Turn in your pledge form with any funds raised.
  • Pick up a dipster wrist band.
  • Pick up a plastic bag for your post-dip towel and clothing.

5. Put anything you will need immediately after the dip in the plastic bag that they will provide (towel, housecoat and/or parka, change of clothes, hat, boots, flip flops or slippers for when you come out of the hot tub, etc.). Leave the numbered post-dip bag in the designated area with one of the Icebreaker volunteers.

6. Go to the dipster area and stay warm. They’ll give you last minute instructions on site.

  • The first dipster will lead off at 1 p.m. sharp.
  • Do the dip!

7. Make a splash and smile!

  • Friendly divers in dry suits will help you safely and swiftly exit the cold water.
  • Icebreaker volunteers will meet you on-shore with your numbered plastic bag and will direct you to the hot tubs or back to the change tent depending on what you choose.
  • Head over to the men’s or women’s heated change tents and get changed in comfort, or head up to the hot tubs to dip again – in warm water this time. You may bring your clothes with you to change in the Elbow Valley Residents Club after getting out of the hot tub.

Icebreaker Polar Bear Dip Calgary 2016

When: Friday, January 1, 2016

Time: 1 p.m. sharp

Where: Elbow Valley Residents Club – 1


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DH Calgary Staff
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