Kelowna Polar Bear Dip Becomes Virtual Due to Omicron – Kelowna News

The Omicron variant of COVID-19 has claimed another victim.

With an increasing number of cases in the province, the Community Recreational Initiatives Society (CRIS) has made the difficult decision to cancel the personal part of the Polar Bear Dip New Year’s Day in Kelowna.

“We pushed it to the last minute, but especially with the numbers that came out yesterday, it just really wasn’t the smart thing to do,” Russ Cogan told CRIS.

Instead, it will continue as a virtual event.

Dippers can participate by signing up and donating on the CRIS Trellis page. Then take a video of yourself taking a quick jump into the lake, climbing into a cold bathtub, jumping down a snow bank, or getting creative with how to make your dip.

Cogan says going virtual opens up a broader demographic.

“If I have a friend on the other side of the country, if they want to join, then they can now,” Cogan said. “So it’s a little bit of silver. And it’s also nice that it’s not just a dip now, so if someone really would not do it, but they would jump in a snowbank or do something else fun in the cold and still support , that they can change their video that way too. “

Videos can be submitted for a chance for prizes via Facebook or Instagram and must be tagged with @crisadaptiveadventures and #CRISPolarBearDip. Submissions will be accepted until January 9, 2022.

This is the second year in a row that CRIS has had to postpone the popular group event on Tugboat Beach. The last time people gathered for the polar bear dip in Okanagan Lake was on January 1, 2020.

The goal of the event is to raise $ 50,000 for the programs offered through the organization. CRIS Adaptive Adventures offers fully accessible guided programs in both drop-in and multi-week progressive formats for people who would not otherwise participate in outdoor recreation and sports.

The association celebrated its 20th anniversary this year.

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