DENVER – Polar plunge water and Saturday’s morning weather -- both under 40 degrees. However, the below-freezing temperatures couldn’t keep people away from City Park or the Denver Zoo.
The annual Special Olympics Colorado Splash and Dash brought more than 800 people to Denver for a 5K and Polar Plunge.
Everyone who took a plunge was required to raise $75, and it cost 5K participants $35 to walk or run. Many participants contributed much more.
The proceeds collected go directly to the organization and its athletes.
Organizers said $250 alone provides funding for training and competition for an entire season for one athlete.
Denver7 reporter Amanda del Castillo spoke with Vincent Egan, who has competed with the Special Olympics for the past 13 years.
“I do alpine skiing, basketball, golf soccer,” Egan said. Soon, he’ll take his talents overseas.“I also leave to Austria in just 14 days.”
“We’re headed to Austria, where the summit will be held,” Alie Goldblatt said. She will compete as a Unified Partner, helping the athletes enhance their own special abilities.
“It’s setting up an athlete to score a goal, or assisting them on the field,” Goldblatt told Denver7.
As of 2 p.m. on Saturday, the event’s main page showed proceeds climbing to more than $71,000.
Members from Denver7’s morning and evening newscasts took the plunge. In total, the station raised more than $1,600 for our state’s more than 21,000 Special Olympics athletes.