Taking the plunge for Special Olympics

CHIPPEWA LAKE – Frigid temperatures and piercing gusts of wind greeted all who gathered for the 10th annual Polar Plunge early Saturday afternoon at Chippewa Lake.

The annual event, which raises money for Area 5 Special Olympics, was a little different than in years past.

Ice conditions didn’t allow for participants and supporters to take to the ice for the annual event, so organizers improvised, creating a runway down the boat launch for plungers to walk into the water.

For the 75 residents who pledged to jump into the ice, cold water – many of them dressing up in costumes or even bathing suits – it was the waiting that was the real challenge.

More than $150,000 has been raised in the 10 years the event has taken place, according to Area 5 Director Pat Rosales.

Area 5 covers both Mecosta and Osceola counties.