600 People Expected to Take the Polar Plunge

Volunteer 'super plungers' take a dip in a freezing pool to raise money for Special Olympics.

Volunteer Amy Pidgeon reacts to the water temperatures during the Lehigh Valley Polar Plunge's "Super Plunge" event.
Volunteer Amy Pidgeon reacts to the water temperatures during the Lehigh Valley Polar Plunge's "Super Plunge" event.
On Saturday at noon, some 600 people will converge on Scott Park in Easton, and take a quick dip in the frigid Delaware River.

But in the hours leading up to the Lehigh Valley Polar Plunge, a few teams of "Super Plungers" were going a few steps further: jumping into a pool of chilly water once an hour for 24 hours.

Among them was Laurie Plotsko, part of a team from IU20 that had volunteered to take the early plunge, jumping—briefly—into an inflatable pool set up outside the Grand Eastonian.

"I just got here, and I don't even want to think about it," she said, eyeing the pool as some of her colleagues finished their latest dip.

There were women bundled in several layers and men who went in with just swimming trunks, all part of a fundraiser for the Special Olympics. They were "super plungers" in more ways than one: to take part in Friday's event, the teams needed to raise at least $1,500. 

Last year's plunge brought in $90,000, said the organization's Eric Cushing. This year, they're aiming for $100,000.

Cushing said there were no time restrictions, other than that teams were required to go into the pill once an hour between noon Friday and noon Saturday.

"They can stay in for 10 seconds, they can stay in for 10 minutes," he said.

Has anyone stayed in for 10 minutes?

"No," Cushing said. "Three minutes has been the longest."

Some plungers had spent a few minutes in the pool earlier to help a WFMZ news crew get the shot they needed.

"You have to keep moving, or your legs get really heavy," said Amy Pidgeon, one of the super plungers. 

The Polar Plunge takes place at noon Saturday at Easton's Scott Park along Larry Holmes Drive, with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m. More than 550 people have pre-registered, but Cushing expects 600 to 700 people to take the plunge in the end.


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