Splashing into a brand new (chilly) year


A new year is cleansing. You wash away the old, and start again with the new. And many like to begin the new year with a cold splash to the face.

And body. And limbs.

Two local events that are beginning to look a whole lot like traditions for years to come will take center stage on Saturday, Jan. 1. Participants in both Fenwick Island and Bethany Beach will kick off their new year with a jump in a very cold ocean.

Fenwick will begin things with the Fenwick Freeze, which will be held at Bayard Street and the ocean. Participants will dive into the ocean at 10:30 a.m. in an effort to raise money for the Fenwick Island Beach Patrol. That unit has produced top-pacing teams at the United States Lifeguarding Association’s national competition in Manhattan Beach, Calif., and many of the guards come into town for the Freeze to support those who are supporting them.

The town will hold a bonfire at this year’s event to help offer a little warmth for the participants, as well as providing a little atmosphere for the event in general.

Right up the road, in Bethany Beach, the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce will be holding its 15th Annual Leo Brady’s Exercise Like the Eskimos plunge.

Those willing to jump into the ocean at noon will be raising money for the Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation, the Chamber’s fundraising arm that gives 100 percent of donations received to scholarships and grants for local non-profit organizations. PNC Bank is the presenting sponsor of the event, and participants can earn awards for forming the largest teams in different divisions.

Both of these events have gained popularity over the years, and raise money for outstanding local causes. On top of the goodwill and fundraising, they’re both just plain fun.

To all those participating in one or both of these chilly events, we salute and thank you. For those not participating, but donating to the worthy causes the events support, we thank you, as well. We’re a community that consistently unites for others, and that’s something to be proud of these days.

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We’d like to send out congratulations and best wishes to the University of Delaware football team, who will square off with Eastern Washington in Frisco, Texas, for the FCS National Championship in football on Friday, Jan. 7.

Once again, the football program at UD has made all of us proud, on and off the field.