CSEA Western Region 6 Members Take The Polar Plunge – Brave The Chilly Waters Of Lake Ontario To Raise Needed Funds For Special Olympics New York
(ROCHESTER, NEW YORK) - With sub-zero wind chills at their back, Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) Western Region Members braved the chilly waters of Lake Ontario on Sunday (February 14th) to raise necessary funds and awareness for Special Olympics New York.
Now in its 16th year, more than 1,800 participants signed up to take the plunge in 2016. Lead by Team Leader and CSEA Western Region 6 President Flo Tripi, CSEA raised more than $6,500 for this year’s event.
Event director Sal Gerbino said organizers prepared for bitter cold temperatures and sub-zero wind chills with extra divers and emergency rescue squads on hand.
Plungers were informed early on at registration that plunging was an option due to the wind chill and that it was fine to simply dip their feet into the lake.
However, that message didn't resonate well with CSEA Members – many of whom went full steam ahead - as usual.
"It's called the ‘Polar Plunge’ for a reason," Tripi said. "It was ‘really cold’ - but it seemed ‘colder’ in years past. I am ‘so proud’ of our Members - everyone really ‘stepped up to the plate.’ This is truly ‘one of the most rewarding’ annual events we support. To see the smiling faces of the athletes and to know we can help them ‘overcome hardships’ and ‘create a little joy’ in their life- well, ‘that’s what community is all about.’”
According to their web site, the Special Olympics New York Rochester Polar Plunge will raise more than $330,000 this year.
WNYLaborToday.com Editor’s Note: All photos that appear in this Labor News Report were taken by CSEA Western Region Communications Director Ove Overmyer.