If you’re looking for a fun way to break in the new year on Virginia’s eastern shore, look no further than Chincoteague Island and Polar Pony Plunge 2018! The popular, annual event is held every January 1st on Assateague Island.
New Year’s Eve is a lot of fun but New Year’s Day can be even better if you find the right way to celebrate it. Chincoteague Island’s annual Polar Pony Plunge is one of those right ways. I mean, what could possibly be more fulfilling than throwing yourself headlong into the icy surf of the Atlantic, right?
Okay – maybe lots of things would be more “fulfilling” but what about fun and wackiness? Let’s face it, half the point of the New Year celebrations, both night and day, is letting off a little annual steam. Now, steam may be the last thing to come to mind when contemplating January’s surf but I guarantee you’ll let off SOMETHING when you hit those frosty waves.
Chincoteague Island is a great place to visit and this doesn’t change just because the bulk of the tourists are back home. In fact, many visitors wait quite specifically for the off-season to visit the island. They know that fewer tourists means more quality time and space to soak up all that makes Chincoteague so special.
Polar Pony Plunge 2018 is the end game to what begins here at 7pm on New Year’s Eve.
The festivities kick off at the American Legion on Main street with a buffet and live music from the Virginia Creek Band. The party continues on to 1am but many will leave at 10:30pm for the Costume Promenade at Robert Reed Park.
Chincoteague Island’s annual Costume Promenade is a lot of silly fun with locals and visitors alike dressed in crazy costumes. After the promenade, costumed attendees are judged and awarded prizes for a variety of categories.
Then – you guessed it: it’s time for the New Year’s Eve countdown! On Chincoteague, we drop a glittering horseshoe, not a ball. Come midnight, the horseshoe descends the pole and a cheer goes up. Happy New Year!
For many, that’s it. The new year celebrations are all over but for the next day’s regrets. That’s not true on Chincoteague! For us, the next day means the annual Polar Pony Plunge on Assateague Island’s beach!
Each year’s Polar Pony Plunge takes it’s starting time cue from the new year’s date. This year it will be January 1st, 2018 – and Polar Pony Plunge is scheduled for 1:18pm. Get it?
Polar Pony Plungers are encouraged to dress up in wild and zany costumes for prizes but it’s not a requirement. In fact, the only requirement is reading and signing the Plunge Waiver and Release Form prior to plunging. Polar Pony Plunge 2018 is otherwise free to attend. Plus you’ll receive a commemorative t-shirt to help prove to your non-attending friends and loved ones just how brave (crazy) you are!
Spectators (“the sane,” we call them) are just as welcome as participants. Someone has to hold the towels, after all – and hey, you can still buy one of the commemorative t-shirts!
Polar Pony Plunge 2018
Monday, January 1st, 2018 at 1:18pm
On the beach at Assateague Island
The Polar Pony 2018 Waiver and Release Form is available online and must be filled out prior to participating.
Chincoteague Island Polar Pony Plunge Lodging
Island Manor Bed and Breakfast and Miss Molly’s Inn, our sister Chincoteague Island B&B, are both open year-round. We’ll keep you cool in the summer, warm you up after Polar Pony Plunge 2018, and keep you well fed and comfy all the times in between! No matter when you visit Chincoteague, be sure to book your stay at Island Manor House!