Polar Plunge set foe Feb. 29

Garden City Community College will be hosting the Garden City Plunge & Strut, a benefit for Special Olympics Kansas (SOKS), on Feb. 29.

More than 30 individuals have already pledged to plunge into the icy waters of a pool that will be constructed in the parking lot of GCCC’s Perryman Athletic Complex, including GCCC’s own president, Dr. Ryan Ruda.

“This event supports Kansas Special Olympics, a very worthy cause, and the money raised stays in Kansas and helps the Special Olympics athletes be able to participate in athletic events,” Brandy Unruh, GCCC criminal justice instructor, said. “I started participating for fun, but then I realized the athletes have as much fun as the plungers do.”

The 2020 fundraising goal for the Garden City Polar Plunge is $12,000, according to Luke Schulte, senior vice president of Development for SOKS. The money raised from the event helps fund equipment, year-round sports training and competition, health programs, and leadership classes for SOKS athletes.

Schulte said heated spaces inside the basketball arena will be available for participants to dry off and change after taking the Plunge. In addition, awards will be given to top finishers for the Polar Strut, best costumes for individuals and groups, top fundraisers, and to the team with the most participants.

Plunge participants are asked to pay or fundraise a minimum of $75 and will jump in the pool at noon. The Plunge will also feature a family friendly one-mile or 5K Polar Strut, starting at 11 a.m., around the campus for those who want to join the fun but not get wet. All who register and pay $30 for the 5K will receive a pair of commemorative gloves. Registration for both events can be done online at www.plungeks.org/gardencity or starting at 9:30 a.m. on the day of the event.

Additionally, if a participant in either the Polar Strut or Polar Plunge raises over $100, they are entered into a raffle to win their share of $13,500. The more money a person raises, the more entries into the raffle. For a complete breakdown of entry levels, visit www.plungeks.org.

For more information, contact Schulte at schultel@ksso.org or 620-408-4450.