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Mother Nature Can't Stop Western Kentucky Polar Plungers
Weather Forces Changes but the show goes on at kentucky dam village state resort park

While Mother Nature shut down much of Kentucky on Saturday, February 21, many of the intrepid Polar Bears of Western Kentucky could not be deterred as they turned out more than 200 strong for the 2015 Western Kentucky Polar Plunge.

That polar bears managed to hit the water at Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park doesn't mean that the weather didn't play havoc with the proceedings. The Polar 5k that has been part of the Plunge festivities for the last three years had to be postponed until April 14 when a suitable course couldn't be cleared of snow in time. Also, the area that our plungers usually use to take the Plunge into Kentucky Lake was iced over and couldn't be used. So the fire department came to the event's rescue, putting up small water tanks for participants to "Plunge" into this year.

It may not have been in the lake, but the 2015 Western Kentucky Plunge was still plenty Polar.

Despite the below-zero temperatures and snow that hit the state leading up to the Plunge, more than $92,000 (and counting) was raised to help support Special Olympics athletes in Western Kentucky and throughout the state, and many of the fundraising totals were very impressive.

Chuck Williams from the Murray/Calloway County Special Olympics team regained his crown as King of the Polar Plunge after raising $5,384.36, leading a team that took Top Fundraising Team honors with a total of $13,149.60.

The Queen of the Plunge was Pam Matlock of the Murray State Super Heroes who raised $1,500.

Williams and Matlock were joined on the Polar Plunge royal court by Prince of the Plunge Rhett Hellan, 10, of The Kool Kids team, who raised $1,638, and Plunge Princess Harli Hanisch, 12, of Harli's Angels who raised $1,020.

Amanda Ashlock of the Murray Independent Ice Breakers defended her title at the Top Too Chicken Fundraiser (person who raises money for the event but doesn't plunge) with a total of $2,867.69.

Hannah Babcock was the
Top Fundraising Special Olympics Athlete.

The Top Special Olympics Athlete Fundraiser title went to Hannah Babcock of Murray/Calloway County Special Olympics, who raised $1,085.

Two teams defended their Polar Cups as the largest teams of the Polar Plunge. Marshall County Special Olympics won the Cup with 31 members who raised more than $8,700. The Frigid Felons won as the largest Law Enforcement Team with eight members who raised $1,028.25.

The new Polar Cup winner came in the Fraternity/Sorority/School Division, where Cool Cardinal Nation took the title with 19 members who raised $1,415.

We thank everyone for their incredible commitment to the Polar Plunge. This has been the most challenging year in the 17-year history of the Polar Plunge in Kentucky, and we are so thankful for the many people who make the Western Kentucky Plunge such a great event every year. We hope to see everyone again in 2016.

The 2015 Polar Plunge was sponsored by Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park, WKYQ-93.3, West Kentucky Star, Domino's Pizza, Pella, Tanager Productions, WPSD Local 6, Community Federal Savings Bank, Lake Chem Community Federal Credit Union, Benton Electric Supply, Polaris of Benton, Regions Bank, Primary Care Medical Center, Choices Unlimited, Taylor Bus Sales, Murray Calloway Transit, Corvette Lanes, Imes Funeral Home, Kennedy Fan Shop, Houston Ag, River Valley AgCredit, McDonald's, West Kentucky Surgical, Murray Electric Cable, Maiden Alley Cinema, Cheri Cinema, Subway, America’s Mattress, Taylor Bus Services, Choices Unlimited, Pella, Thoroughbred Spirits, Thornton Heating and Air,  and the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Kentucky.

For more information about how to get involved in the 2016 Western Kentucky Polar Plunge as a participant, team captain or sponsor, contact Special Events Assistant Kendra Lowther at 502-326-5002 or klowther@soky.org.

The Western Kentucky Plunge was one of six Polar Plunges held in Kentucky this year, with other events in Bellevue, Lake Cumberland, Lexington, Louisville and Owensboro.

2015 Western Kentucky Plunge Award Winners

King of the Plunge — Chuck Williams, Murray/Calloway County Special Olympics; $5,348.36 raised
Queen of the Plunge — Pam Matlock, Murray State Super Heroes; $1,500 raised
Prince of the Plunge — Rhett Helland, 10, The Kool Kids; $1,638 raised
Princess of the Plunge — Harli Hanisch, 12, Harli's Angels; $1,020 raised
Top Too Chicken Fundraiser Amanda Ashlock, Murray Independent Ice Breakers; $2,867.69 raised
Top Fundraising Special Olympics Athlete Hannah Babcock, Murray/Calloway COunty Special Olympics; $1,085 raised

Polar Cup Corporate/Civic Division — Marshall County Special Olympics; 31 members, $8,703 raised
Polar Cup School Division — Cool Cardinal Nation; 19 members, $1,415 raised
Polar Cup Law Enforcement Division — Frigid Felons; 8 members, $1,028.25 raised

Top Fundraising Team — Murray Special Olympics; $13,149.60 raised


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