Start the 2014 New Year Off with a Penguin Plunge into the Atlantic Waters of the Crystal Coast

Yes, it's that time of year again. The start of the 2014 New Year signals the 11th Annual Atlantic Beach Penguin Plunge. Make January 1 a date to remember by mustering up some courage (and some extra body heat) to take a chilly dip into the Atlantic waters of the Crystal Coast. Sorry, wet suits aAtlantic Beach Penguin Plungere not allowed but costumes are encouraged.

The good news is that in addition to making some unforgettable memories, you'll also be plunging for a good cause. The Atlantic Beach Penguin Plunge proceeds benefit Hope for the Warriors. A minimum donation of $10 for adults, $5 for kids 12 and under goes a long way in supporting and enhancing the quality of life for post-9/11 service members, their families, and the families of the fallen. Increase your donation to $20 and receive a long sleeve tee; $35 and you'll receive a hooded sweatshirt.

You can regisAtlantic Beach New Year's Day Penguin Plungeter for the Atlantic Beach Penguin Plunge online or at 10a.m. the day of the event. The Penguin Plunge begins at 1p.m. on January 1 at the Atlantic Beach Boardwalk. Last year, 494 brave participants plunged the 52.4-degree water in 54-degree air temperatures. (See, that's not so bad....) This New Year's Day is forecast to be close to those temperatures. We're hoping for even bigger crowds this year, so gather up your family and friends and make it your New Year's Day tradition! If you're not cold water inclined, then join the sidelines with the over 2000 spectators to cheer on the participants. Either way, there's lots of fun to be had. Visit the Penguin Plunge Facebook page for up-to-date action and photos of this year's event. Let us know if you'll be plunging this year or coming out to watch all of the action.

January is the perfect month to start planning your 2014 Crystal Coast beach vacation. Make it a priority to set some time aside for some rest and relaxation with family and friends, block off your vacation dates, and secure your Emerald Isle vacation rental. Choose the location, size, style, and amenities you desire to make your vacation the best it can be.

Don't forget about the Crystal Coast Countdown to 2014 going on now. There are plenty of exciting events going on to help you ring in the New Year in Crystal Coast style. New Year's Eve day and New Year's Day are packed with activities, so be sure to check them out here.

We look forward to seeing you on our Crystal Coast beaches and in our towns this year. Cheers to 2014!

*Photo Credit: Atlantic Beach Penguin Plunge

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