What do you get when you have more than 15 Special Olympics athletes, 17 employees from UNCOMN, and Carlyle Lake at an inviting 34-degrees? —Freezing for a great cause, of course!
On February 23rd, Special Olympics Illinois (SOILL) Rejoin J hosted their annual Polar Plunge at Lake Carlyle. Rejoin J’s annual series of Polar Plunges typically raises over $100,000 each year and serves as the kick off for another season of exciting sports competitions for over 1300 registered athletes. UNCOMN’s team members weren’t the only attendees. More than 315 participants comprising over 40 teams braved the frigid waters and took the flying leap to raise money to finance athlete’s participation in events year-round.
While every penny raised is worth celebrating, UNCOMN’s seasoned 8-year veteran plunger, Bill Howard, led the team through the event and was recognized as “Top Plunger” by individually raising over $2,000.
The Polar Plunge isn’t technically a competitive event for the athletes, but that doesn’t mean they don’t take part in the plunge festivities. According to Justin Dunning, Region J Director in charge of the event, this year’s plunge was a record breaker with more than 15 Special Olympic Athletes participating.
“Ultimately, [the athletes] are what these fundraisers are all about.” said one participant, “It’s easy to get distracted from that sometimes and you can start to focus on yourself and how cold that water is but having so many athletes there really makes you remember the real reason you’re there and the impact you’re making.”
We had a great time capturing all of the day’s frigid festivities with UNCOMN’s Phantom 4 V2+ drone and you can see all of the photos by clicking any of the images in this article. Also, make sure to check out https://uncomn.com/news/ to stay up to date on all UNCOMN news and events!