Team HPD was the second highest fundraising team for the entire event. One of the team members, Patrolman Dan Bridges, ended up as the overall top fundraiser by collecting $4,000. Two other HPD officers, Christine Lewis and Lara Hall, raised $450 and $405 respectively.
The Polar Plunge team from Hazelwood West High School (Team HWHS) made its mark by ranking as the overall fourth highest fundraising team, and second highest school fund-raising team. The top three fundraisers from that team included these students: Tim Schutzenhofer ($1,120), Daniel Kiernan ($850), and Nikki Krato ($340).
Sponsored by Shop ‘n Save and WIL 92.3 FM, this year’s event was hosted by the Hazelwood and Maryland Heights Police Departments, with support from the Pattonville Fire Department. It was held near the Tremayne Shelter at Creve Coeur Lake. Registration began at noon and the Plunge started promptly at 2 p.m. All proceeds benefited the athletes of Special Olympics Missouri. This year, participants raised $101,361.
The Polar Plunge is open to anyone 10 years of age or older. However, participants are required to raise a minimum of $75 in order to take a dip in the icy cold water.
Most of them came dressed in creative costumes and swimwear for a chance to experience this annual ritual for a worthy cause. No wet suits were allowed, and wearing shoes was mandatory. In order to make their “polar” dip count, they had to run into the water, fully submerge themselves underwater, and then run back to shore for a warm towel to dry off.
Everyone received a commemorative t-shirt and additional incentives for reaching various fundraising levels at $300, $500, $1,000 and $2,000. Those interested in registering for next year’s event should contact Jacelyn Diehl, SOMO Area Director, at 314.961.7755 or send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHOTO CAPTION: Members of Team HPD in first photo included the following individuals: First Row (left to right) Officer Heather Wright; Mike Sievers (friend of Officer Davis); Explorer Jacob Klaus, and Officer Josh Davis. Second Row (left to right) St. Louis Outlet Mall GM David Reed, Officer Dan Bridges, Officer Patrick Kiely, Officer Lara Hall, Officer Jason Autery, Officer Tim Snipes, Detective Brendan Gilbert, and Explorer Nick Mattes.
Credit for Photos: Anna Jewson