$105k Raised for Special Olympics From Polar Plunge


Brookhaven Town held its 11th Annual “Polar Plunge” on November 21.

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L to R: “Frozen Eagles” team celebrating their plunge, including Rocky Point School District students Elyse Nadeau, Madison Palifka and Quentin Palifka with Brookhaven Town Councilwoman Jane Bonner. Photo courtesy of Town of Brookhaven.

On November 21 people took to Cedar Beach in Mount Sinai to plunge themselves into the freezing waters of the Long Island Sound. It was not all for naught. The participants were raising money for Special Olympics at the 11th annual “Polar Plunge: Freezin’ for a Reason.”


COVID-19 forced the Town to take social distancing precautions, requiring facemasks and allowing only one group to plunge at a time. Despite the restrictions, the event attracted 215 plungers and raised more than $105,000 for Special Olympics New York, according to a press release about the event.


Photo: “Frozen Eagles” team member Karen Curtiss, who participated in the “virtual plunge” at an alternate site. Town of Brookhaven.


Councilwoman Jane Bonner, who led the “Frozen Eagles” team, raised $1,600, enough to support four athletes for a year. Collectively, the team raised $3,645 for Special Olympics New York.


“I applaud Special Olympics New York for their determination to make this year’s Polar Plunge a success despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Bonner, who plunged for the 11th time. “I want to thank my ‘Frozen Eagles’ teammates and all the plungers, volunteers, police, first responders and Town employees for helping the Special Olympics athletes achieve their dreams.”


Special Olympics New York, Long Island Region has 4,000 athletes training and competing year-round in 22 Olympics-style sports. The athletes and their families or caregivers are never charged to participate. It costs $400 to support training and competition for one athlete for one sports season. For more information about the Special Olympics New York, visit their website.