CONEY ISLAND, Brooklyn (WABC) -- Thousands of people took part in the annual Coney Island Polar Bear plunge on Sunday, dipping into the chilly waters of the Atlantic Ocean for a good cause.
The Coney Island Polar Bear Club is the oldest winter bathing organization in the United States.
Since 1903, the Polar Club has been hosting a public New Year's Day Plunge to welcome in the New Year.
In the past decade, the club has raised over $500,000 to support local charities.
This year they are supporting the New York Aquarium, the Alliance for Coney Island, and local nonprofit community organizations in the Coney Island community.
"The Alliance for Coney Island is proud to partner on this great event," Steve Cohen, Chairman of the Alliance for Coney Island and Vice President of the Brooklyn Cyclones said. "The Polar Bear Plunge marks the official start of the New Year in Coney Island and is a fun event, even for those not brave enough to take the plunge. We appreciate all the support from fundraisers that help our local non-profits. We hope that plungers and spectators will stop into our local businesses that will be open on the boardwalk and throughout Coney for their New Year's Day celebrations."
Online donations will begin on Sunday starting at 3 p.m. until 11:59 p.m. on January 8.
To make a donation click here .