Tuesday, October 16, 2018

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Gimme 5: Polar Plunge returns to Menomonie

Event, in seventh year, grows with Wakanda Beach location

  • sk-TainterPlunge08-02131-14401370-158897

    Dozens of hardy individuals made a splash Feb. 12, 2011 on Tainter Lake north of Menomonie in the second annual Indianhead Area Polar Plunge at Elk Point Resort. Plungers raised pledges to support Special Olympics. A plunge to benefit Special Olympics will take place this Saturday at Wakanda Park in Menomonie.

    Staff file photo

Editor’s note: Gimme 5 is a five-question interview about a topic of local interest.

Who: Lisa Walter, director of special events, Special Olympics Wisconsin.

Talks about: Polar Plunge in Menomonie.

When: Noon to 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

Where: Wakanda Park, Menomonie.

How many years has this event been held in Menomonie?

This will be our seventh year in Menomonie. It’s our second year at Wakanda Beach. We have so much more room on Wakanda Beach; we’ll have food and beer and a heated tent.

Last year, 200 people plunged into the water, raising more than $40,000 for Special Olympics Wisconsin. What are you anticipating this year?

We are up already in donations and plungers from last year at this time. We have a lot more sponsors. I think it’s really growing in Menomonie.

What is the cost to participate?

They need to raise $75 to plunge. They can sign up online at plungeWI.org. It’s not too late to register.

How many people do you anticipate will be in attendance?

There are usually two to three people who watch each plunger, so we’re looking at 600 or so on the low end. Even if people aren’t plunging, they should come. It is so much fun to watch.

How big of a hole, and how deep is the water?

It’s a 10-by-20-foot hole. We cut the hole in water that is about four feet deep, so they can make the decision if they want to bend their knees and get their head into the water.

— Chris Vetter 

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