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Plunging Polar Bears Raise Thousands for Special Olympics

15 'Long Valley Ice Breakers' set for second annual frigid dip in Wildwood.

Long Valley Ice Breakers in 2013's Polar Bear Plunge. Photo Courtesy Kevin Herbst.
Long Valley Ice Breakers in 2013's Polar Bear Plunge. Photo Courtesy Kevin Herbst.

Some call it crazy, some call it stupid.

For 15 Long Valley residents, it’s called fun for a great cause.

The Long Valley Ice Breakers will head down to Wildwood and jump into the frigid waters of the Atlantic Ocean on Jan. 18 in to help the Special Olympics.

Led by team captain Kevin Herbst, the group has been raising money through a donation page where every dollar will benefit the athletic event for mentally and physically handicapped persons.

The team set a goal of $4,000 six weeks ago, and as of noon Sunday that milestone had been surpassed and the group raised $4,500.

This is the second year the team will take part in the Wildwood Polar Bear Plunge. The Candlelight Inn, a bed and breakfast in North Wildwood, donated free stay for the group in advance of the plunge.

Donors to the Long Valley Ice Breakers can go here to help the team raise money.

Team members include Herbst; Emily Bohn-Drake; Nina Brader; Aaron Drake; Jesse Gartelmann; Lucas Hoskin; Pamela Hoskin; Beth Ort; Bill Ort; John Ort; Daniel Rasmussen; Jimmy Rasmussen; Kyle Richards; and Jennie Worthington.

According to weather.com, the temperature forecasted for Saturday, Jan. 18 is 31-degrees in Wildwood. As of Sunday, the surface water temperature was 45-degrees.

denise January 13, 2014 at 08:41 AM
I couldn't breathe and had to be pulled out of the ocean in September because it was too cold when I was a healthy age 18....this group looks a bit older, so I don't know how they can do this , but I am astounded at their effort and strength!!!! Is there an address we can send donations as support( from our cozy warm houses...)?

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