Polar Plunge


Chloe Shepherd, Staff Writer

Last weekend was my first time participating in the Polar Plunge event for Special Olympics Indiana. The Polar Plunge is a fundraising activity. You have a team, usually a county in Indiana, and each member of the team is trying to raise as much money as they can for Special Olympics. By the end of the fundraising effort, all of the teams come together to “plunge” into a lake. There’s different events throughout Indiana, but I did my plunge in Borden, which is about an hour away from Seymour.

All of the money that the teams raise go to Special Olympics Indiana. About 40% of your own fundraising totals will go to your county’s teams. The money goes to new uniforms, equipment, tournaments, and etc. for the Special Olympic Athletes to have the best experience they can during their athletics.

This is the first year that Jackson County has participated in the Polar Plunge. Our team raised $950, and I raised $116 on my own. We are hoping to have a lot more people and to raise a lot more money next year. Since this was our first year, we weren’t sure how we would do once we got into the water. The water was a very nice 34 degrees Fahrenheit. When it was our time to plunge, we just went for it. In the beginning, the water wasn’t too bad. Then once you hit the halfway mark, your whole body goes numb. The DNR divers wanted me to stick my head under the water, but I wasn’t about to do that. I had to keep reminding myself the slogan for this year’s Polar Plunge, “Freezin’ for a reason”, as I walked through the water.

I really wanted to do the Polar Plunge because I think it’s such a great event. Special Olympics is such a great organization, and it does a great job promoting independence and self-esteem for people with disabilities. Special Olympics gives opportunities to people with disabilities that they might not be able to get in other settings. It also helps end stigmas surrounding people with disabilities. The atmosphere that surrounds the Polar Plunge and Special Olympics is a truly remarkable one. Everyone is very supportive and kind. I had a great time freezing for a good reason.