Icy dip will support great cause

Despite the brutally cold weather this winter, some brave souls are doing something Saturday you have to watch to believe.

They are going to jump into a pond of icy cold water on the Ides of March.

These brave – and yes a little bit crazy – folks are participating in the Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge for Special Olympics.

Wearing costumes of all sorts, these women and men will jump into a pond made at Marquette Mountain just for the occasion.

One of about 30 such plunges taking place in Michigan this year, registration for the Marquette Mountain event starts at 1 p.m., with a parade of costumes at 2:15 p.m. and the plunges beginning at 2:30 p.m.

Those who want to take the plunge can sign up in advance at somi.org or at the hill on Saturday.

The plunge portion of the day ends at about 4 p.m., but there’s more. Starting at 5 p.m., there will be a contest: Man Carries Woman – or Woman Carries Man, depending on what the participants decide. One partner will carry the other through a course on the hill. The fastest participants win a number of prizes.

The registration for that is $10.

There is no charge for spectators to come to watch the action, but donations for the cause will certainly be accepted. And spectators are invited to purchase meals during the post-plunge party, to buy 50/50 tickets while at the event or to purchase a T-shirt, which will be a memento to remind one of a fun afternoon.

Most of the plungers raise funds by collecting pledges from friends, family, co-workers and neighbors. Proceeds from the Polar Plunge helping to support year-round sports training and athletic competition for more than 19,600 children and adults with intellectual disabilities in Michigan.

Sponsors of Saturday’s Polar Plunge include Marquette Mountain, Starbucks, Midway Rental, the Marquette Police Department Dive Team, WLUC-TV6, Kix Country Radio and Buffalo Wild Wings.

For more information, visit somi.org.

We encourage people to head out to the ski hill for an afternoon of laughter that supports a wonderful cause. The high temperature is forecast to be just 17 degrees, but we know the kind hearts involved in Polar Plunge will make Saturday seem a warm spring day.