Teams from the King County Sheriff’s Office, Redmond Police Department, the South County “Copsicles” and more braved the cold on Feb. 23 at Alki Beach for a polar plunge supporting Special Olympics Washington.
Delayed two weeks by Seattle’s snow storms, the event still featured a fair amount of ice. The light rain turned to hail shortly after the first wave of plungers ventured into the chilly waters of Puget Sound.
But participants said they were “freezin’ for a reason,” with some wearing T-shirts with the phrase, “The cold is temporary, the impact is lasting!”
According to its website, the event raised more than $160,000. It also featured a food truck fair and beer garden.
Initially, the goal was to break the Guinness World Record for largest polar plunge, but organizers said they fell a little shy.
“While we may not be breaking the world record for the largest polar plunge, by all accounts we will have the largest gathering of polar plungers with the biggest hearts,” they wrote on the website.
The top fundraising teams were law enforcement agencies, with the Seattle Police Department and Snohomish County (Marysville Police Department) Polar Plungers bringing in the most. Redmond Police Cpt. Erik Scairpon and Bothell Police Chief Carol Cummings also participated — Cummings for the eighth year in a row.
Special Olympics Washington provides people with intellectual disabilities with a place to play and feel included, through programming in sports, health, education and community building. Go online to www.specialolympicswashington.org for more.