Hundreds join Kirkland Polar Bear Plunge (photos)

[scrollGallery id=195] Kirkland's 10th Annual "unofficial" Polar Bear Plunge took place Sunday as hundreds descended  upon Marina Park to take a dip in the not-so icy waters of Lake Washington. The crowds were in high spirits (perhaps because a few brought flasks with them) as longtime Kirklander Kellie Jordan answered the call and lead the countdown to one o'clock, the "unofficial" start time.

This year, the Polar Bear Plunge saw a 75th birthday celebration at the beach as well as many families both young and old. Also on hand was Representative Larry Springer, Kirkland Deputy Mayor Penny Sweet and three Kirkland City Councilmembers -- Doreen Marchione, Bob Sternoff and Amy Walen, a healthy contingency from Australia and for some reason, a shetland pony.

The weather was warm, and the sun was out which helped make the event one of the best attended in years. If you missed the 2012 Polar Bear Plunge, do not fear. The countdown to next year's event has already started in the hearts of the die hard plungers.

Happy New Year!

Thank you to Marielle Dunavant and Joene LaBou for sharing their photos.

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