Wilson Special Olympics Polar Plunge to Take Place on February 3

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Image from Tennessee Special Olympics website

The coolest thing you can do all year is participate in the Wilson County Polar Plunge on February 3 to help fund the Special Olympics for Area 27. Dubbed “Freezin’ for a Reason,” helps support the special needs athletes who compete in the Special Olympics. Their goal this year is $20,000. So far they have raised $12,500. 

With a minimum entry fee of $75, $50 for students, each plunger will receive an official “Freezin’ for a Reason” t-shirt and “all bragging rights associated with taking the frigid plunge.” The more funds raised by an individual, the more swag they will receive. Those raising $150 for the cause will also receive a stocking hat. For a $300 donation you will also get event logo sweatpants. A $600 donator will receive a backpack. And anyone who raises $1,000 will receive all of the goodies. Super fundraisers who give $3,000 or more will take home a Yeti cooler. There is a $10 down payment fee to participate. Register here.

People can plunge as individuals or part of a team. Costumes are strongly encouraged. There will be an award for best costumes and themes. 

If you don’t want to take the plunge or have health concerns, you can still donate to the cause and get involved. Learn more about the event here. 

A Polar Plunge, AKA Polar Bear Plunge, is jumping into icy cold water, outside, on a chilly winter day, on purpose. These events got started on New Year’s Day in 1904 when a swim club called the L Street Brownies jumped into Dorchester Bay in Boston, Massachusetts. That is why National Polar Bear Plunge Day takes place on January 1, but the events often take place throughout January and February all over the world.

The concept was not a new one on that freezing cold day in 1904. Scandinavians started popping into frozen waters and swimming about a century earlier. 

There are health benefits to plunging into icy cold water. It is described as being “like a shot of adrenaline.” It can help with blood sugar regulation and fat burning. Of course, part of that might be moving quickly to get in and out of the bath of a thousand pins as quickly as possible. 

Jumping into freezing cold water can also have detrimental effects, especially for those with heart disease because it increases heart rate, blood pressure and breathing. People with any heart issues are asked not to participate in Polar Bear Plunges. 

The Polar Plunge will take place at Jimmy Floyd Family Center at 511 North Castle Heights Avenue in Lebanon. Registration/check-in will begin at 10:00 a.m., and the plunge will take place at 11:00 a.m.

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