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2016 Polar Plunge Brings In $50K For Special Olympics

Posted On February 22, 2016

By Mike Perleberg

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Versailles Town Marshal Joe Mann (left) and Special Olympian Chris Perdue, of Osgood, carry the Special Olympics torch into the water at the 2016 Polar Plunge at Versailles State Park. Photo courtesy Special Olympics ROD.

(Versailles, Ind.) – Thanks to the hard work of volunteers and the borderline insanity of those splashing into the icy-cold water, the Polar Plunge to benefit Special Olympics Indiana was once again a success.

Organizers say 176 people plunged at the annual fundraiser held on a warm Saturday at Versailles State Park’s reservoir. The goosebumps on the plungers weren’t as big as usual, with Saturday’s high temperature tying a record 72 degrees.

“It’s very touching to see so many Plungers brave the icy water and having fun doing so, all for such a great cause,” volunteer organizer Greg Townsend said afterwards.

The preliminary fundraising total for this year’s Polar Plunge is over $50,000, with pledges and donations continuing to be received.

Denise Anderson had the distinction of being the event’s top individual fundraiser with $2,162 made for Special Olympics Indiana. The Knights of Columbus and Lions Clubs of Ripley County were the highest-netting team with $6,034.50.

Other notables from Saturday’s Polar Plunge at Versailles State Park:

Largest team – Powerlifting Polar Bears (Special Olympics powerlifting athletes, coaches and friends).

Public safety team – Moores Hill Hot Fire Chicks.

Star Student – Carah Beck of South Ripley High School with $1,035 raised.

Largest school team – South Ripley High School with 25 students.

Over all top cool school team – South Ripley High School with $6,322 raised.

Townsend says that if you want to support a Polar Plunger, you can still do so up to March 31st by going to www.soindiana-rod.org/polarplunge and click on the “Support a Plunger” button. Plungers can also continue to mail pledges received to Polar Plunge Versailles, 429 Manchester St., Aurora, IN 47001.

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