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Participants brave the 42-degree waters of Long Lake for the annual Polar Bear Plunge on Tuesday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Steve Bloom / Olympian

Bathers run into the chilly surf Tuesday as the Coney Island Polar Bear Club New Year's Day swim gets underway.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Monika Graff / Getty Images

In a reference to Superstorm Sandy, a man in costume as a boiler wades into the water during the Coney Island Polar Bear Club swim. Sandy's floodwaters ruined boilers, the crucial component of residential heating systems, in homes across the Northeast.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Monika Graff / Getty Images

A woman reacts to the frigid water during the Coney Island Polar Bear Club's New Year's Day swim.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Monika Graff / Getty Images

A man wearing a costume made of Metrocards, passes used to access transit by New York-area commuters, takes part in the Coney Island Polar Bear Club swim.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Monika Graff / Getty Images

The first wave of several hundred swimmers rush to take a plunge in 30-degree temperatures during the 110th annual Coney Island Polar Bear Club ocean swim Tuesday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Kathy Willens / Associated Press

While bundled spectators watch, a bikini-clad reveler takes the plunge during the annual New Year's polar bear dip in Herring Cove.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Andrew Vaughan / Canadian Press

Participants, including two women in a Godzilla costume, take to the frigid waters of English Bay during the annual Polar Bear Swim in Vancouver.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Darryl Dyck / Canadian Press

A couple kiss to counteract the freezing conditions in the River Forth during the annual Loony Dook Swim on Tuesday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images Europe

A participant in the Loony Dook Swim finds the waters of the River Forth exhilarating, to say the least.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images Europe

A tropical theme emerges at the Loony Dook Swim in the River Forth.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images Europe

A man prepares to make a splash in the traditional New Year's swim Tuesday at Geluzis Lake.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: PETRAS MALUKAS / AFP

Members of Les Ours Blancs (The Polar Bears) drink champagne in the Bay of Biscay during their annual New Year's celebration.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Bob Edme / Associated Press

Bathers, and at least one dog, make their way across Pine Creek during the fourth annual Pine Creek Polar Bear Plunge at Valley View Park.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Jacqueline Dormer / Republican-Herald

A portrait of incoming Chinese President Xi Jinping hangs above swimmers celebrating the new year with a plunge in the Yongjiang River, a tradition begun in 1958 by Mao Tse-tung.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: JUN LI / FEATURECHINA

People run into the North Sea during the Nieuwjaarsduik (New Year's dive) on Tuesday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: ROBIN UTRECHT / ANP

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Polar bear swimmers plunge into freezing water to celebrate New Year around the world

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Polar bear swimmers plunge into freezing water to celebrate New Year around the world

How did you ring in the new year? The hearty souls pictured here took a dip in frigid water, be it briefly or for a few laps. Some came dressed in costumes — including Godzilla and a home water boiler — though it’s unclear how much that helped in the cold water.

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