On Sunday, May 16th, Centennial Beach held its first ever preseason plunge. 150 daring people swam in the chilly water for the first time this year.
This event is apart of the Naperville Park District’s outreach campaign to encourage non-residents to check out Naperville’s very own beach. According to officials, outside temperatures were in the upper 60’s and the water was still pretty cold.
“The water really doesn’t warm up to real nice temperatures till sometime in mid summer. So it takes awhile, so that’s why the water’s about 61 degrees today and very very chilly, but refreshing,” said Sameera Luthman, the Director of Marketing of Naperville Park District.
However, those who did decide to jump did so at their own risk.
Nolan Mankey, a Naperville resident said, “I felt like I had hypothermia. It was just freezing!”
“I wanted to get out of the water, that’s how shocking it was,” said Naperville resident Emma Jones.
Belgio’s Catering provided complimentary hot chocolate, coffee and popcorn to participants and those who chose to watch, keeping their distance from the cold water. A prize drawing also took place, with a grand prize of a beach season membership for 2010.
A Naperville parent, John Jones said, “I wanted to do something different with the girls. We have season passes here to Centennial Beach, so we thought we’d do something different to start off the summer. Even though the water needs to warm up yet, it seemed like a fun thing to do on a beautiful day.”
Those who take the plunge received a commemorative button. Centennial Beach officially opens on Saturday, May 29th.
Luthman says the event was a success and could become an annual tradition.
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