THE BIG DIP IN THE NIP!

THREE LOCALS TAKE PART IN CANCER FUNDRAISER ON SLIGO BEACH

CONOR CULLEN

THREE south Wexford residents bared all for a good cause in Sligo last Saturday morning.

Olive Vaughan, of Westwinds, Kilrane, her brother Cyril Pierce, of Portside, Rosslare Harbour, and Cyril's wife Maureen, who is recovering from cancer, all made the long journey westwards last weekend for a skinny dip with a difference.

The trio were part of a group of 350 people who shed their clothes and braved the icy water at Dunmoran Strand in aid of cancer research.

300 women made a big splash on the strand about 100 metres away 50 men did the same, while four couples who wanted to make a naked splash together formed the third group taking part in the 'Dip in the Nip'.

Organiser Maire Garvey said the separate starting points were to ensure women, or men, who were shy about showing their bodies in front of the opposite sex could take part without embarrassment.

74-year-old Olive said their group had no such worries. ' There was fatter and skinnier than me and younger and older, though noone was looking at anyone else anyway,' she said.

Olive and Cyril and Maureen weren't completely naked though. Olive and Maureen wore green hats and Cyril opted for an extravagant multi-coloured umbrella hat. She said this was so they could pick themselves out in the pictures of the many rear ends entering the sea!

Olive said the water was ' like ice' on Saturday morning, but they rushed in - and then returned for more. 'I went in and dipped down and had a swim and gout out and then I went back in two more times,' she said.

'I had to get out in the end because my body was turning to ice! It's going to be a doddle going up to Rosslare for a swim now,' said Olive.

'The thought I was mad,' she said, recalling her family's reaction when she first informed them that she would be taking part in a mass skinny dip.

However, she got received great support from her family, friend and the wider Kilrane community as she ' knocked on very door' as part of her fundraising. She raised €325 in all towards cancer research and thanked everyone who sponsored her.

The Kilrane resident said it was a great experience and they had a wonderful time in Sligo. 'I can't wait until next year!' she said.

The trio would like all their friends, St. Helens Golf Club, and all the other sponsors who supported them.

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