2014 Polar Plunge dates benefiting Special Olympics Ohio approaching

Special Olympics Ohio announces the lineup and site list for its 2014 Polar Plunge season. This popular event, held on Saturdays during January, February and March at locations throughout the state, is among the largest fundraisers for Special Olympics Ohio. All money raised from the Polar Plunge benefits more than 23,000 Special Olympics athletes in Ohio.

There are nine opportunities across Ohio this winter to participate in Special Olympic Ohio’s “Freezin’ For A Reason” Polar Plunges. The first Plunge of the season is January 18 at Mosquito Lake, in Cortland. The next two Plunges are scheduled for January 25 at Thirsty Pony, in Sandusky, and at Caesar’s Creek, Waynesville. February 1 is when Special Olympics Ohio and Special Olympics Kentucky come together for a Plunge to benefits the Special Olympics athletes of both states. This Plunge is held at Joe’s Crab Shack, in Bellevue, Kentucky.

Ohio University, in Athens, hosts its Plunge February 8, at Lake Snowden. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, in Powell, has its Plunge February 15. The Geneva Polar Plunge and Geneva Super Plunge are scheduled at Geneva State Park, in Geneva, February 22.

The 2014 Polar Plunge season continues in March. Grand Lake St. Marys, in Celina, hosts its Plunge, Saturday, March 1, while Indian Lake, Lakeview, hosts the final Plunge of the season March 15.

As part of the Polar Plunge experience, participants obtain monetary pledges and then agree to jump or slowly crawl (however the case may be) into the frigid waters of an Ohio lake or waterway, or the special Polar Plunge pool, depending on location, to earn their pledges. Another opportunity to participate is “Too Chicken to Plunge.” To participate, one raises a minimum of $30 and is awarded with a “Too Chicken to Plunge” T-shirt – as well the opportunity NOT to Plunge. Or, teams of chickens may be formed in support of favorite Plungers.

A minimum in pledges (either $50 or $75, depending on age and location; $100 minimum for Geneva Plunge) is necessary to participate. All plungers receive a T-shirt and food and non-alcoholic beverages at a Post-Plunge party. There are also incentive prizes for those who collect more than the minimum pledge. Individuals and groups are welcome to participate; personalized online fund-raising pages are available.

The Geneva Super Plunge involves raising a minimum $888 in pledges and Super Plungers commit to jumping in once an hour for eight hours.

Information for all Plunges is available at sooh.org or by phoning Special Olympics Ohio at 614.239.7050

Special Olympics Ohio provides year-round sports training and competition opportunities for adults and children with intellectual disabilities, giving them opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy as they participate in the sharing of gifts and friendship with their own families, their peers and the community. Currently, Special Olympics Ohio serves more than 23,000 athletes throughout the state.