A Jump Into Cold Waters

LINKS and friends raised money for the Special Olympics.


Olivia Schelling

Traveling to infinity and beyond, Dr. Wright took the plunge. Students were able to view the plunge via zoom!

Olivia Schelling, Co-Editor

Raising money for a special cause doesn’t have to come from regular old can drives, youth clinics, or even car washes. The Special Olympics introduced the concept of a Polar Plunge to raise money for students with intellectual disabilities. The Polar Plunge is presented by the Law Enforcement Torch Run. They are a group of volunteers dedicated to raising awareness and funds for Special Olympic athletes across the State of Michigan.

 The Polar Plunge is the biggest fundraiser for the Special Olympics. Every last bit of money raised from donations goes to year round training and services for people with intellectual disabilities. 

  “The Polar Plunge is a series of events where people go to the extreme to support Special Olympics Michigan. Special Olympics Michigan is helping to create a world that accepts and welcomes every single person regardless of ability or disability” Special Olympics Michigan stated. 

  Waverly invited GLHS to participate in a “Crosstown Rivalry” to raise money for the Special Olympics. On Wednesday March 9, 2022, the GLHS LINKS program traveled to Waverly High School to take the plunge. Goals were set in order to determine who was jumping into the icy waters. If GLHS was able to raise $500, Dr. Wright was required to jump. If $750 was raised, GLHS’s very own LINKS teacher, Mrs. Howard is jumping. Finally, if $1000 was raised, Jacob McElroy, LINKS student, agreed to take the plunge. 

  These goals pushed students to donate money to the Special Olympics. Once $500 was raised, LINKS and friends announced that Dr. Wright was taking the plunge dressed in a Buzz Lightyear costume. After a week and a half of raising money, the final total for GLHS was $1158.00. This means that Dr. Wright was not the only one jumping. Mrs. Howard and Jacob joined Dr. Wright in jumping into the icy water. 

  The day of the plunge was nothing but crazy. Since this event was during the school day, it was live streamed on Zoom for teachers to show to their classes. The Zoom call held about 30 participants once the plunge began. Emersyn Truong hosted the Zoom and interviewed students and staff about their experiences. 

  Mrs. Howard and Jacob were the first to jump. The Lansing Police Department was on standby for any potential dangers. Each jumper had the choice to jump to one of their favorite songs. Jacob and Howard jumped to the Cupid Shuffle. Jacob couldn’t help himself but sing on the way down! After talking to both jumpers, the plunge was surprisingly not as cold as expected.

  Dr. Wright was the last jumper of the day. Dressed in a Buzz Lightyear costume, he was ready to soar. Dr. Wright jumped to You’ve Got A Friend In Me from  Toy Story. Get it, since he was dressed as Buzz! Wright was a champ traveling to infinity and beyond for the plunge! 

  The 2022 Polar Plunge was very successful and the GLHS LINKS and Staff can not wait until the future for more chances to raise money and awareness for the Special Olympics.