Taking the plunge for a good cause

February 26, 2011 7:19:56 AM PST
The Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge is taking place over the next few weeks.

Participants raise at least $75 in donations from friends, family and co-workers in exchange for jumping into the icy waters of an Illinois lake in the middle of winter.

Each plunger receives a Polar Plunge sweatshirt and entrance into a Post-Plunge Party, plus the chance to win additional prizes for raising more money.

You can support a super plunger or register to take the plunge for Special Olympics Illinois at www.plungeillinois.com

There are six Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunges in the Chicagoland area between Saturday, February 26, and Sunday, March 6. The first is the so-called SUPER Plunge, where Some Unbelievable Plungers Enter Repeatedly into Lake Michigan over a 24-hour period.

All proceeds collected by plungers benefit Special Olympics Illinois athletes. In 2010, more than $1,379,500 was raised by more than 5,154 plungers.

    List of plunges:
  • Friday, Feb. 25 & Saturday, Feb. 26 - SUPER Plunge at Northwestern University's North Beach, Evanston (Plunging once an hour every hour for 24 straight hours beginning at 2pm Friday)
  • Saturday, Feb. 26, Noon - Carlyle Lake, Carlyle
  • Saturday, Feb. 26, 1pm - Northwestern University's North Beach, Evanston
  • Saturday, Feb. 26, Noon - Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve, Mahomet
  • Saturday, Feb. 26, Noon - Moorman Lake, Upper Moorman Park, Quincy
  • Saturday, Feb. 26, Noon- Lake Springfield, Knights of Columbus Hall #4179, Chatham
  • Sunday, Feb. 27, Noon - Miller Park Lake, Bloomington
  • Sunday, Feb. 27, 1pm - Lakefront Park, Fox Lake
  • Sunday, Feb. 27, 2pm - Lake Storey, Galesburg
  • Sunday, Feb. 27, 1pm - Twin Lakes, Salt Creek Park District, Palatine
  • Saturday, March 5, Noon - Rend Lake, South Sandusky Beach, Benton
  • Saturday, March 5, Noon - Southern Illinois University, Campus Lake, Carbondale (NEW LOCATION!)
  • Saturday, March 5, Noon - Lake Decatur, The Beach House, Decatur
  • Saturday, March 5, Noon - Lake Sara, Effingham
  • Saturday, March 5, 1pm - Sunrise Beach, Lake Bluff
  • Saturday, March 5, 2pm - Manteno Lake, Manteno
  • Saturday, March 5, Noon - Olson Lake, Rock Cut State Park, Rockford
  • Sunday, March 6, Noon - Loon Lake, Silver Springs State Park, Yorkville
  • Saturday, March 19, Noon - Lincoln Lakes, Private Beach, Lincoln

Attire:
Anything but a wet suit. Shoes are recommended and costumes are encouraged. Don't forget a towel with which to dry off! No head-first diving is allowed!

Those interested in registering for one of the 18 other Polar Plunges may do so at www.plungeillinois.com or by calling the above number.

    Here is a list of the 28 SUPER Plungers:
  • Bill Devine - Officer with Tinley Park Police Department, parent of a Special Olympics Young Athlete
  • Dwayne English - Officer with Joliet Police Department, parent of a Special Olympics athlete
  • Wendy English - Former special education teacher, parent of a Special Olympics athlete
  • Rob Faith, Hudson - Special Olympics Illinois employee
  • Jennifer Gruber - Officer with Joliet Police Department
  • Jeff Henson, Bloomington - Law Enforcement Torch Run Liaison, Special Olympics Illinois
  • Francisca Hernandez - Joliet Police Department
  • Matt Johnson, Normal - Law Enforcement Torch Run Liaison, Special Olympics Illinois
  • Brooke Klawitter, Steger - USG Corporation employee, parent of a Special Olympics Young Athlete
  • Dave Klawitter, Steger - Homewood-Flossmoor High School employee, parent of a Special Olympics Young Athlete
  • Ron Kus - Detention aide for Orland Park Police Department
  • Julie Larson - Officer with Joliet Police Department
  • Josh Latina - Officer with Algonquin Police Department
  • Jay Loomis, Volo - Employee at US Food Service
  • Paula Lukin, Lockport - Employee at Fresh Connect
  • Mike McDermott, Lombard - Employee at CARQUEST
  • Jennifer McGee, Glen Ellyn - Young Athlete Coordinator, Special Olympics Illinois
  • Ken Norbut - Chicago Ridge Police Department
  • Mary Pocius - Employee at North East Multi-Regional Training Center
  • Douglas Pump, Chicago - Financial aid counselor at DePaul University
  • Bruce Quintos, Chicago Ridge - Retired from Cook County Forest Preserve Police
  • Mal Rafter, Villa Park - Employee at US Food Service
  • Pat Rafter, Villa Park - Pharmacy technician at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital
  • Dennis Reilly - Officer with Riverdale Police Department
  • Robert Reilly - Officer with Orland Park Police Department
  • Kathy Schniedwind, Normal - Retired athletic trainer at Illinois State University, Special Olympics Illinois board member and volunteer
  • Randy Schmitz, Orland Park - AERO Special Education Cooperative employee and brother of a Special Olympics athlete
  • Lisa Yanchick - Dispatcher with Joliet Police Department

To support one of the 28 SUPER Plungers, visit www.plungeillinois.com

and click on the Sponsor a SUPER Plunger link, then select SUPER Plunger you want to support, or contact Special Olympics Illinois at 800-394-0562.