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Special Olympics New York hosting Polar Plunge this Saturday


Tue, Nov 28th 2017 05:05 pm
Still time to register
In an effort to raise funds to support over 68,500 athletes across New York state, Special Olympics New York is hosting the annual Polar Plunge at Woodlawn Beach this Saturday, Dec. 2.
Nearly 1,000 participants are pre-registered to plunge into the waters of Lake Erie at Woodlawn Beach (now at 49 degrees F) and have currently raised $87,500. It costs approximately $500 to support one athlete through one season of training and competition.
This event has raised $2,032,901 over the past decade, which has been able to provide 4,065 Special Olympic athletes in New York the opportunity to train and compete.
The schedule of events on Saturday includes:
  • 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Registration inside building at Woodlawn Beach - registration is available the day of the plunge and all participants must register
  • 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Costume contest inside the large, heated tent, which will feature food, raffles and music
  • 1:25 p.m.: Polar Plunge warm-up
  • 1:35 p.m.: Check presentation inside the tent. Checks from Praxair and Brennan's Bowery will be presented (tentative)
  • 1:40 p.m.: Award presentation inside the tent
  • 1:50 p.m.: Niagara Falls RS Honor Guard to present colors
  • 1:55 p.m.: Parade to plunge, starting from the tent and parading down the beach pathway to the water
The parade of plungers will be led by three different torches representing law enforcement on a federal, state and local level. Special Olympics is the charity of choice for law enforcement. Officers all over the world carry the Flame of Hope to raise funds and awareness for Special Olympics. Current Special Olympic New York athletes plunging include Nick Zmuda, Carl Miller, Ron Warren, Mollie White, Joe Scherrer, Patrick Jordan and Michael Checko.
  • 2 p.m.: Plunge
The Polar Plunge is a Law Enforcement Torch Run event. LETR is the largest grassroots fundraising and public awareness movement for Special Olympics, raising over $70 million globally in 2017. This event is co chaired by New York State Police Staff Inspector Steve Nigrelli and Town of Hamburg Lt. Jim Koch.
The mission of Special Olympics New York is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in 22 Olympic-style sports to children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other athletes and the community.
The organization prides itself on the principle that it equips each athlete, coach and community with the means to participate in Olympic style sports and competition - at no cost to the athlete or their family. Today, Special Olympics New York is the largest program in the U.S., headquartered in Schenectady, with offices in Long Island, NYC, Hudson Valley, Capital, Central, Genesee and Western regions.

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