The bitter Michigan cold was no match for the brave plungers on the cold Sunday afternoon. The St. Clair Boat Harbor hosted the very first official Polar Plunge in St. Clair on February 24th. The suggested donation for one to participate was $75. All proceeds were donated to The Special Olympics of Michigan
The Polar Plunge was supported by its six sponsors. These sponsors were Buffalo Wild Wings, Starbucks, Olga’s, Water Warriors, The Law offices of Cashen and Strehl, and the Voyageur restaurant located on the St. Clair River. The Voyageur not only helped sponsor the event, but was also the registration and meeting place for participants and staff after the initial plunge took place. After registering and turning in donations at The Voyageur, plungers then walked the short distance to the boat harbor located on the Pine River.
The participants were monitored by the St. Clair Fire Department and the St. Clair County Sheriffs Dive Team. The dive team had four divers in the water with the plungers, as well as a number of other divers on standby for emergency purposes.
“Hats off to the firemen and diving team,” said St. Clair County Sherriff Tim Donnellon. “They are not being paid for this, but are doing a great job and we couldn’t have done this without them.”
Josh Allor, a Mt. Clemons resident, was participating in what would be his sixth plunge. “I’ve been to a Polar Plunge in New York, it was crazy! This is a much smaller and a more community oriented town. It’s a great opportunity to do something for a good cause without having to deal with a lot of people.”
Josh joined the other participants in dressing up in outrageous costumes, wearing a floral one piece female bathing suit, complete with hula skirt and a Mohawk hat. He held his breath and took the icy plunge without hesitation. Afterwards at The Voyageur he added, “That was fun, we’re going to sleep well tonight.”
The grand total for money raised was $8,531. Special Olympics of Michigan representative and event announcer Jim Adams said, “It’s great to see a community with a big heart come out to support a great cause.”