INDIANAPOLIS — When the announcer at this year’s Polar Plunge said the water at Eagle Creek Reservoir was a chilly 32 degrees, a spattering of grumbles arose from the large crowd gathered for the 15th annual Polar Plunge for Special Olympics.
The event, Saturday at Eagle Creek Park, was the last in a line of Polar Plunges throughout the winter known as “Freezin For A Reason” to bring awareness for adults and children with intellectual disabilities.
When three New Palestine High School students heard the announcer mention the water frigid temperature, they shot each other a quick glance, shrugged their shoulders and smiled while they waited for the event to get underway.
Senior Ben Richter along with fellow NPHS juniors Chaz Hill and Daniel Richardson were the three hearty souls representing the school’s Student Council for Athletic Leadership in Education (S.C.A.L.E) program taking part in the charity event.
Dressed in shorts, flip-flops and a Hawaiian short-sleeved shirt, Richter said he was excited about taking the plunge for a good cause.
“I’m pretty pumped,” Richter said. “I think its going to be a lot of fun.”
Hill, who last year helped his older brother, Ty Hill, carve a hole in the pond behind their house and then watched Ty jump in, said he was looking forward to taking the same type of plunge.
“It looked really, really cold when Ty did it last year,” Chaz Hill said with a grin. “But, I don’t mind doing it for a good cause.”
For Richardson, the decision to take part was personal. His older brother Alex Richardson takes part in Special Olympic activities, including bowling.
“I’m mainly doing this because it helps my brother,” Daniel Richardson said. “But, I do think it will be fun.”