Thursday, April 24, 2014

More ‘Polar Plungers’ urged

With the local Voyageur Lions Club’s annual “Polar Plunge” once again set for New Year’s Day, organizers are hoping the fundraiser will be a successful one.
But in order to do that, they’re urging more “jumpers” to sign up.

“We have about 21 confirmed so far,” noted Bill Michl.
He knows many tend to just “show up” on Jan. 1 but is asking that those planning to “take the plunge”—and who haven’t signed up yet—to do so.
“It just gives us a better indication of numbers,” Michl explained, adding each participant also receives a shirt, so knowing how many jumpers to expect allows organizers to have enough shirts on hand.
For those interested in participating in the event, which will start at 1 p.m. at the dock behind La Place Rendez-Vous, pledge sheets are available at Emes Financial, Canadian Tire, and the Rendez-Vous.
Jumpers can take the plunge on their own, or as a representative of a local group or organization.
Participating groups receive half of the net proceeds raised by member jumpers while those interested in jumping as individuals raise funds for the Voyageur Lions.
And while some people just donate a sum of money and jump, Michl said participants are encouraged to collect
“We’d like to see each person raise a minimum of $50,” he remarked. “But we’re certainly not going to turn anyone away who wants to take part.
“The more, the merrier,” he reasoned. “The more people, the more money comes in.”
Last January’s “Polar Plunge” saw a significantly lower number of jumpers than previous years, with just 20 people leaping into the icy waters of Sand Bay.
Yet they managed to raise more than $8,000, so the club is hopeful to exceed that amount this year.
Michl also stressed it’s never too late to sign up.
“We can make sure anyone who wants forms gets them,” he said.
And as always, residents are invited to come out and cheer on the jumpers.
However, since the government dock (where the spectators have watched the event for years) was closed to the public this summer due to it being unsafe, it won’t be usable for the “Plunge.”
“We talked to the town and they said they don’t want anyone on it—even in the winter,” Michl noted.
“We’re going to have to make do, and hope the ice is good and holds the people,” he added, stressing all spectators will have to stand on the ice to watch the jumpers.
For more information on the “Polar Plunge,” contact Michl (276-1334) or Larisa Curr (274-6917).

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