Plunges Set Sights On GLSM

CELINA — A annual event will be coming around once again this weekend as area residents have the opportunity to plunge for a cause.

The Special Olympics of Ohio is holding its fifth-annual Grand Lake St. Marys Polar Plunge this Saturday at the Celina Moose.

“This is our eighth one this year,” Special Olympics of Ohio Marketing and Development Director Paige Ludwig said. “There are nine throughout the state.”

To participate in the plunge, participants can either register ahead of time or register the day of the event.

“There is a minimum of a $75 pledge, $50 for students,” Ludwig said.

She noted the Grand Lake St. Marys plunge doesn’t usually get a lot of people who pre-register.

“For this one, a lot of people just show up, and they don’t pre-register,” Ludwig said.

Saturday’s plunge at the Moose will kick off with registration from 10:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., followed by a costume contest at 1 p.m.

The actual plunge will be at 1:30 p.m.

“We’ll have a post-plunge party immediately after the plunge at the Moose,” Ludwig said.

“We have prizes for the top three individuals for fundraising and for the top fundraising team. There are also prizes for the costumes — for teams and for individuals. The prizes will be given out at the post-plunge party.”

She noted the Grand Lake St. Marys plunge usually sees between 60 and 75 participants.

“Our first year, it was a very snowy winter, and we had over 50 people,” Ludwig said.

“The weather is not usually a factor in attendance.”

This year — unlike for 2011’s polar plunge — officials should not have to cut a hole in the ice for the plungers.

“There should be no ice because we’ve had such a mild winter,” Ludwig said.

The Special Olympics of Ohio polar plunges throughout the state benefit the Special Olympics athletics.

“This helps us provide our sports programs and opportunities for the more than 23,000 Special Olympics athletes in Ohio,” Ludwig said.

“All the proceeds go to fund those events.”

The Celina Moose Lodge No. 1473 is located at 1120 E. Market St. in Celina.