Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

February 28, 2013

Still time to join in the ‘plunge’

Barry Porterfield
Pauls Valley Democrat

bporterfield@pvdemocrat.com — The icy chill for some is fun for all and it supports a cause we can all get behind as Pauls Valley prepares to again host another Polar Plunge event.

The local event, set to make another big splash on Saturday, March 2, is like many of the other plunges around the state — meant to help the Special Olympics of Oklahoma.

When the event does arrive it represents the Polar Plunge for the Fun Country area, which is for the general region from Pauls Valley to Ada to Ardmore down south.

Local officials working for some time to again make this a big success are stressing that anyone and everyone can still be a part of the big plunge.

“We’re working right now for donations and to get people involved,” said Derrick Jolley, assistant police chief in PV.

“It’s not too late to sign up and participate,” he said. “People need to keep this event growing, and the Polar Plunge is a pretty special event.”

The way the Polar Plunge works is people pledge money to see other individuals or groups jump into a pool of chilly water.

This year’s PV plunge will again be at the band shell in the local Wacker Park with registration starting at 10 a.m. and the divers taking off around 11 a.m.

With law enforcement agencies all over being a big supporter of the event, PV’s police chief, Mitch McGill, also stresses there’s still plenty of time to get involved, even for those who choose not to take the dive.

“It’s a $75 minimum to take the plunge,” McGill said. “It’s a lot of fun. I encourage people to come and just watch.

“Even if you’re not involved in the plunge but want to donate, come down, have a hamburger and be a part of a really fun event.”

Along with the fun atmosphere of the event, a Polar Plunge goes to help a lot of young people take part in a number of Special Olympics track meets held throughout the state during the year.

“It supports these special youngsters,” McGill said.

“They wouldn’t be able to do that without this funding,” he said about the track meets. “This is how the kids do these things.”

Event coordinator Elizabeth Sam has said the money raised from the plunge event helps Special Olympics statewide, in the area and locally.

This will be the third Polar Plunge held in Pauls Valley with last year’s event here finishing as the second large plunge in the state behind only Oklahoma City.

The first ever plunge in PV back in 2011 had 35 people taking the dive and raised around $14,000.

Last year there were 68 plungers as about $31,000 in donations and pledges were raised.