SOUTH BOSTON — If it's New Year's Day in South Boston, it's time to go swimming.
A 121-year-old tradition continued Monday with the L Street Brownies' annual New Year's Day Polar Plunge in Boston Harbor.
Many of them wore costumes as they ran into the cold water around 10 a.m. The air temperature was about 33 degrees and the water temperature was about 44.
An Allston family dresses up as a bee to honor their late father, Lenny Kelleher, who dunked for several years.
“My dad Lenny started jumping into the water in his 80s, and when he couldn't do it himself anymore, we had to go and pick him up and then we just kept doing it.” Lenny's daughter, Didi Kelleher, told WBZ-TV.
Lunenburg's Mark Potinis wore an old Jerry Cheevers Boston Bruins jersey and goaltender mask as he took a dunk.
“It feels great. It's in the middle, not the coldest, not the warmest, it's nice,” he told WBZ. Potinis said he and his friends did it for a friend who had been diving by himself for several years, but who died last year.
L Street Brownies claims to be the oldest “polar bear” club in America.