Polar Bears Run Wild in Coney Island

On a mild clear day on the last Sunday in November, the Coney Island Polar Bear Club meets for their weekly swim in the Atlantic Ocean.

Polar Bear Club

A first-time observer estimates Sunday’s polar bear population at roughly 25-30, including a couple of bear cubs.

A new bear heads for the sea.

When an inexperienced bear complains of aching in the feet and shins. Capri, a knowledgeable polar bear, says sagely, “Everyone’s different. Me, I come out when my feet start to tingle. Because after the tingling, the feeling stops. You can stay in forever then. That’s how I got a little frost nip one time.”

Bears return from the sea.

Polar bears cavort. Lovely.




Wise bear keeps circulation flowing.

After learning about membership from Club V.P. Tony, it’s time to wander the boardwalk.

Coney Islander soaks up last November rays in a cozy corner.

Handball is big among island natives, who wield bare mitts like tightly strung rackets.

Power hitters

Below, an invigorated, if slightly chilled, polar bear poses for a portrait.

Two happy burger men

The rides are closed, and the quiet structures are beautiful.

The Parachute Jump

Watch for more on Coney Island’s polar bears in future posts.

Explore posts in the same categories: December, In the City, strange encounters, Uncategorized

4 Comments on “Polar Bears Run Wild in Coney Island”

  1. “The rides are closed, and the quiet structures are beautiful.” Lovely.

  2. Charlotte Says:

    How brave those polar bears, new ones and old timers; I don’t think i could do that. Great shot of the parachute jump. Looking forward to more stories from the boardwalk!

  3. Buddy Says:

    Wunderbar! Oh what a beautiful adventure, oh what a beautiful parachute jump. Claes Oldenburg eat your heart out.

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