What would become the Long Beach Polar Bears started innocently enough on Super Bowl Sunday in 1998. Kevin McCarthy and Pete Meyers – decided it would be fun to jump into the Atlantic Ocean for a quick dip before the game. Stories flew around town about how much Kevin and Pete enjoyed their swim. (At least that’s what they said!) Mike Bradley asked Kevin and Pete if they would like company on Super Bowl Sunday in 1999. They readily agreed, and Mike brought along his brother P.J. Bradley to join in the swim.
Patti and Mike Bradley had been searching for a fitting memorial to Paulie, one that would keep his loving heart and generous spirit alive for everyone. It was P.J. who asked: what if the annual Polar Bear Swim were to be a fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Metro New York?
We at Make-A-Wish are grateful that Kevin and Pete generously and enthusiastically agreed that it was a wonderful idea to turn their swim into a fundraiser for Make-A-Wish. So, on Super Bowl Sunday 2000 the Long Beach Polar Bear Club jumped into the freezing ocean with warm hearts, startled shouts and determination.
The rest is history.....