Residents splash in the new year at Hidden Valley Lake

HIDDEN VALLEY LAKE, IN (FOX19) – - There are many different traditions that come along with welcoming the New Year, and many people consider January 1st a fresh start.

Dozens of brave, or crazy, revelers washed away 2012 with a dip in Hidden Valley Lake.

"Are you excited for 2013?" asked one enthusiastic dipper.

"I'm very, very excited," answered the first time plunger. "I'm soaked."

Soaked and stoked to kick off 2013 with a splash at the annual Hidden Valley Lake Polar Bear Dip.

"It's fresh and new," said organizer Ashley Howe. "Start off the new year right. Wash away all the old year and get ready for the new year because it's definitely a doozy getting started that way."

"I think it's just the start of something new," added Kasey Goepper, voted the 2013 Grand Poohbahrina. It's just a chance to start over. So why not start with a nice cold bath?"

For some first timers, a dip in the lake in the middle of winter is something to check off the bucket list.

But for one couple, the polar plunge is nothing compared to the plunge they are about to take.

"We thought that it would be fun since we're getting married January 19 this year that we would have the wedding party come out and do the plunge with us," laughed bride to be Kate Viel.

And since they all made it out in one piece the bride and groom-to-be think that's a good omen for their big day.

"If we can do this, we can do anything," added Viel.

Hopefully no one in the wedding party will get sick before the big day.

Organizers say another great aspect of the polar bear dip is many groups use the event as a fundraiser for their favorite organizations, and another way to start the year off on the right foot.

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