AP NEWS

2020 starts on frigid note with polar bear plunges

January 1, 2020 GMT
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Swimmers jump in the Atlantic Ocean in the annual New Year's Day Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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Swimmers jump in the Atlantic Ocean in the annual New Year's Day Coney Island Polar Bear Plunge, Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

NEW YORK (AP) — 2020 began in frigid fanfare for hundreds of people who splashed through the Atlantic Ocean during the annual Coney Island Polar Bear Club Plunge.

Swimmers wearing Santa hats and other costume braved 40-degree temperatures (4 degrees Celsius) to partake in the New York City tradition.

The weather was chillier than last year, when the mercury rose unseasonably high into the upper 50s (13 to 15 Celsius).

The event dates to 1903 and raises money for various charities.

Polar bear plunges were also held in such locales as North Beach, Maryland; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; and Perth, Ontario.