On Saturday, January 26th a special event took place at Longview Lake, the Polar Plunge. The Polar Plunge is a fundraiser held every year where athletes walk, run, jump, or crawl in to freezing cold waters. All benefits go to helping those with mental disabilities. This fundraiser is important to West as it helps keep the Special Olympics program free for the families of participants. All the proceeds of the Kansas City Plunge went to Special Olympic athletes in the Kansas City area, including those that attend.
Participants arrived at Longview Lake Friday night to pre-register and then met again at 12:00 pm on Saturday for the opening kickoff ceremony. Starting at 12:30 the plunge began. Men and Women entered into their respected tents to change into the gear that would protect them from the cold water. The high for weather on Saturday was 53 degrees Fahrenheit, and the water was only 30 degrees Fahrenheit! Matt Sessler and Brianna King were two West faculty members that participated. West Special Education teacher Brianna King was in charge of assembling a team of people to fundraise for the event. “The Plunge was, as always incredible. It is always very rewarding to see athletes who come out to watch and cheer on the plungers. It was also very humbling to see the amount of people who selflessly commit to raise money for athletes who need their support.” King said.
All in all, the Polar Plunge was a success raising $271,000 for the Special Olympics. “We are hoping to see more LSWHS folks, students and staff, out to join Mr. Sessler and I next year!” King said.
By Hailey Skinner