The Special Olympics Delaware Lewes Polar Bear Plunge, presented by Wawa and Discover, is set for 1 p.m. Feb. 2 in Rehoboth Beach.
The Plunge, celebrating its 29th year, began in 1992 when 78 plungers raised $7,000. Last year, 3,544 Bears raised more than $900,000. Since its inception, the plunge has raised more than $12 million, supporting the year-round program of sports training, athletic competition and related programs for more than 4,200 children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
“Our polar bears continue to support this fabulous event year after year,” said Ann Grunert, executive director of Special Olympics Delaware. “And they also continue to recruit their friends to join them. This event truly is family-friendly, and the perfect way to give back to the community and support such a worthy cause.”
Wawa is a presenting sponsor for the 14th consecutive year. In addition to their support at the event, leading up to and for a few weeks afterward, Wawa “change canisters” in stores benefit Special Olympics.
“All of us at Wawa are proud to support the inspiring athletes of Special Olympics and honor the heroes who have and will continue to change the game,” said Wawa Senior Director of Store Operations for Delaware Adam Schall. “We’ve been partnering with Special Olympics for more than a decade and it’s exciting to be a part of their annual Polar Bear Plunge and to support all participants with free coffee and hot chocolate during the event. We are also proud to have a team of almost 100 Wawa Associates plunging to show their support of Special Olympics and we invite everyone to join them at the event.”
Joining Wawa this year as a presenting sponsor is Discover, a company that has been affiliated with Special Olympics in a variety of ways for more than 20 years. Discover has sponsored several Special Olympics sports competitions and fundraising events over the years through financial contributions and by providing day-of volunteers.
“At Discover, volunteerism and respect are two core values that help shape our culture and guide our actions, which is why we chose to support the Special Olympics Delaware annual Polar Bear Plunge,” said Card Operations Director Lisa Hower. “In addition to Discover’s sponsorship, our employees are volunteering at the event to help make a difference in our community. Every year, our employees show their commitment to these values by devoting their time, effort and spirit to making a difference in our communities and to creating better and brighter places to live and work.”
Activities include a 5k Run to the Plunge, Sand sculpting demonstration, Fire & Ice event and a Restaurant Chili Tasting contest.
For an event schedule and more, visit plungede.org.