More than 4,000 participants raise over $1.3 million for charity during Polar Plunge event

Living Local

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Thousands of people got more than cold feet this weekend as they rushed and jumped into frigid water for this year’s Polar Plunge.

The cold waters could not stop over 4,000 members of the “Plunger Colony” from coming together and raising a record-breaking $1.350 million for Special Olympics Virginia at the 28th Polar Plunge Festival this year.

This recent festival was also the event’s tenth million dollar year.

The event started off with the 4 Miler and 1 Miler along the boardwalk Saturday morning before participants plunged into the water later that day.

The event featured live music, the T.J.Maxx Boardwalk Boogie Costume Parade and Contest, vendors, a life-size sand sculpture, ice carvings and lots of food and fun for festival goers to enjoy as they warmed up from the frigid waters.

Special Olympics Virginia president Rick Jeffrey said the successful event was a great way to unify communities in Hampton Roads and across Virginia through “the transformative power of Sport, Health and Education.”

Members of Newport News Police joined in on the fun and used the event to honor fallen officers including officer Katie Thyne.

Since 1993, more than 56,000 plungers have raised in excess of $16 million for Special Olympics Virginia. The inaugural Polar Plunge took place in 1993 at the Clarion Hotel when 108 plungers raised more than $11,000 for Special Olympics Virginia.

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