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.
A first-time observer estimates Sunday’s polar bear population at roughly 25-30, including a couple of bear cubs.
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.”
After learning about membership from Club V.P. Tony, it’s time to wander the boardwalk.
Handball is big among island natives, who wield bare mitts like tightly strung rackets.
Below, an invigorated, if slightly chilled, polar bear poses for a portrait.
The rides are closed, and the quiet structures are beautiful.
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