Courage Brothers' Polar Bear Dip for World Vision

Courage Brothers' Polar Bear Dip for World Vision

December 22, 2008 11:39 ET

Rain, or Shine; Sleet or Snow-24th Annual Courage Polar Bear Dip to Raise Funds for World Vision

Organizers hope to raise $60,000 for fresh water projects in Rwanda

OAKVILLE, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 22, 2008) -

Editors Note: A video and 2 photos are included with this release.

Five hundred dippers are expected to brave Lake Ontario's icy waters at Oakville's Coronation Park again this year during the 24th annual Courage Brothers' Polar Bear Dip for World Vision, an event that has become a Greater Toronto Area New Year's Day tradition. More than $380,000 has been raised to provide clean water in developing countries since the first dip in 1985.

The event, which began when local businessmen Todd and Trent Courage jumped into Lake Ontario in Burlington, is now Canada's largest charitable polar bear dip - attracting 500 dippers and 5,000 spectators each year.

The purpose is to fundraise in support of fresh water projects in developing countries around the world, providing solutions such as water wells, pumps, and filtrations systems to provide daily amounts of fresh water to improve quality of life. The overall essence of this event is 'water for water' - through collecting pledges, participants who take the 'plunge' help provide fresh water to communities in need.

This year, the Courage brothers and friends hope to raise a minimum of $60,000 for water projects in the Umutara region of Rwanda. The proceeds will be used to drill boreholes, install wells, collect rainwater for irrigation, and train the community how to protect their vital water resources.

In recent years, the Courage Brothers' Polar Bear Dip for World Vision has become more than a simple dip into the icy cold waters of Lake Ontario. The event's festival-like atmosphere, with live music, costumes and celebrities (including Rick Mercer of CBC's Mercer Report), drew more than 450 participants and 5,000 spectators to Coronation Park in Oakville on January 1, 2008. This year, iconic Canadian rocker, Tom Cochrane will join the approximately 5,000 spectators to cheer on almost 500 dippers at the Courage Brothers' Polar Bear Dip.

"We are excited and honoured to have Tom Cochrane as a special guest at Canada's largest charitable dip this year," says Todd Courage. "Because of his commitment to fighting global poverty, just his presence is an endorsement of what this dip is all about - helping less fortunate brothers and sisters around the world have clean water."

WHEN: New Year's Day, Thursday January 1, 2009

WHERE: Coronation Park, Oakville, Ontario

Lakeshore Road between 3rd and 4th Line

WHAT: 12:30 p.m. Registration begins (dippers receive a swag bag from our sponsors along with a t-shirt and certificate)

Live band performs on main stage

1:00 p.m. Regional Chair of Halton welcomes visitors

Oakville Member of Parliament brings greetings from the Prime Minister

1:45 p.m. Costume Contest

1:55 p.m. Prize Draws

2:00 p.m. Polar Bear Dip begins - Tom Cochrane leads countdown to dip

All Participants:

- With the $25 registration fee, will receive a t-shirt, and a membership certificate

- With every $100 raised, will receive a ballot for a chance to win prizes

- Will be eligible to win prizes for the best individual costume and the best group costume

How you can help:

- Donate online

- Participate

- Become a corporate sponsor

To view the video associated with this release, please visit the following links:

http://www.youtube.com/v/FMCAo7k7wPo&hl=en&fs=1

To view the photos associated with this release, please visit the following links:

http://www.marketwire.com/library/20081222-dippers800.jpg

http://www.marketwire.com/library/20081222-donate800.jpg

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