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Swedish Ice Pole-Sitting Contest Has Six Winners

Stockholm (AP) — Six contestants have braved butt-numbing cold and boredom to win an annual ice pole-sitting contest in northern Sweden.

Two women and four men shared the 20,000-kronor prize ($3,100) for remaining on 8.25-foot-tall blocks of ice during the 48-hour contest, which ended yesterday.

Competitors said the worst part of the competition was not the cold — temperatures dipped below -18 F — but the monotony, even though they were allowed to come down for 10-minute toilet breaks every other hour.

Organizer Annica Andersson said the contest has been held annually for a dozen years, and was brought to the Swedish town of Vilhelmnina by a local resident who had participated in a similar competition in Russia.