Edited by Ammie Bryant, Images provided by Jennifer Lightle
Deep in the chill of winter with the warm, balmy days of summer far from sight, the last thing we want to do is take a plunge in icy waters. So when we heard there would be a “Polar Plunge” event in Stillwater this month, we knew we needed to find out more about why anyone would want to take a frigid dive. So, we asked Special Olympics Oklahoma Development Director Jennifer Lightle about the event.
SLM: What is the Polar Plunge?
JL: A Polar Plunge is a fundraising challenge made to an individual or group challenging them to dive into a cold body of water in order to raise money for Special Olympics. Each participant collects pledges from family, friends, and businesses in the hopes of raising lots of money for Special Olympics. The Polar Plunge is coordinated by the Law Enforcement Torch Run which is an international charity made up of law enforcement personnel who raise money and awareness for Special Olympics.
SLM: When and where does it take place in the Stillwater area?
JL: The Stillwater Polar Plunge will take place on Feb. 23, 2019 at Eskimo Joe’s. Registration is at 10:00 a.m. and the Polar Plunge will be at 11:00 a.m.
SLM: How can people get involved?
JL: Participants need to register online at www.mysook.org. Then they will need to solicit contributions from family, friends, businesses, etc. Keep track of donations on the Polar Plunge Pledge form or create a personal fundraising webpage online at www.mysook.org. On the day o the event, participants will bring collected donations to the Plunge. All Plungers must raise a “bear” minimum of $75.00. Costumes are encouraged but not required. Be sure to bring a warm change of clothes for after the Plunge.
SLM: What is Special Olympics?
JL: Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills, and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.
SLM: When and where will Special Olympics be held this year?
JL: State Summer Games will be in Stillwater on May 15-17, 2019
SLM: Is there anything else you would like our readers to know about the Polar Plunge and Special Olympics?
JL: This is a fun and exciting way to raise money for Special Olympics Oklahoma Athletes – So let’s all be BE BOLD AND GET COLD!