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New Jersey shore town cancels annual Polar Bear Plunge

The annual polar plunge scheduled for New Year’s Day in a New Jersey town has been canceled over concerns that it will be entirely too cold to ensure the safety of all participants. 

The City of Ventnor has canceled the event, which features hundreds of people running into the frigid Atlantic Ocean, citing concerns over the cold weather.

A post on the shore town’s Facebook page said temperatures are expected to be 18 degrees on New Year’s Day, but the water temperature likely will be in the mid-40s.

Mike Weissen, the organizer of the Polar Bear Plunge, contacted Mayor Beth Holtzman about cancelling the annual event. 

‘It’s not a city function,’ Holtzman told the Press of Atlantic City. ‘Eighteen degrees is scary dangerous, and I will always err on the side of caution.’

The annual polar plunge scheduled for New Year’s Day in Ventnor, New Jersey has been canceled over concerns that it will be entirely too cold to ensure the safety of all participants. Pictured above is the event in 2016

The annual event features hundreds of people running into the frigid Atlantic Ocean, citing concerns over the cold weather. Pictured above is the event in 2016

The annual event features hundreds of people running into the frigid Atlantic Ocean, citing concerns over the cold weather. Pictured above is the event in 2016

 A post on the shore town's Facebook page said temperatures are expected to be 18 degrees on New Year's Day, but the water temperature likely will be in the mid-40s

 A post on the shore town’s Facebook page said temperatures are expected to be 18 degrees on New Year’s Day, but the water temperature likely will be in the mid-40s

Holtzman then discussed the issue with the city’s commissioners who agreed that it should be cancelled over the icy weather. 

‘As disappointing as this is, we would rather err on the side of safety and think cancelling is the right thing for Mr. Weissen to do,’ the mayor and the city’s commissioners said in a statement. 

It’s unclear if the Polar Bear Plunge will be scheduled for a later date in the Atlantic County shore town.

The National Center for Cold Water Safety said it is too difficult to think clearly in water that’s 40 degrees or colder, and that sudden increases in heart rate and blood pressure can occur. 

It's unclear if the Polar Bear Plunge will be scheduled for a later date in the Atlantic County shore town. Pictured above is the event in 2016

It’s unclear if the Polar Bear Plunge will be scheduled for a later date in the Atlantic County shore town. Pictured above is the event in 2016

Ventnor's annual event is the only such Polar Bear Plunge to be canceled as of Wednesday. Pictured above is the event in 2016

Ventnor’s annual event is the only such Polar Bear Plunge to be canceled as of Wednesday. Pictured above is the event in 2016

Ventnor’s annual event is the only such Polar Bear Plunge to be canceled as of Wednesday, according to the Philly Voice. 

Besides Ventnor, several other towns along the Jersey Shore and New York’s famed Coney Island host Polar Bear Plunges that raise money for charities or other causes.   

The cold weather in New Jersey comes as an arctic blast is taking hold of the northern part of the U.S. 

Officials are warning of hypothermia and frostbite with as little as 30 minutes of exposure outside.

Forecasters are also cautioning those who are outside to bundle up with layers to protect against hypothermia and frostbite. 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk