STONY POINT, N.Y. -- Dozens of volunteers from as young as 8 to people in their 60s, including many athletes, took a dip in frigid Lake Welch waters in Stony Point earlier this month.
The fundraiser garnered $25,000 for Special Olympics New York for the Hudson Valley region. The money came from pledges for participants willing to take the Freezin' for a Reason Rockland Polar Plunge.
Donations came also from Chestnut Ridge Transportation bus company in Spring Valley ($2,500) and Somers Lions Club ($1,000).
"It was 42 degrees that day and with the wind felt more like in the 30s," said Teresa Gilli, director of development.
"I hope this (event) increases and gets more awareness. We raised $5,000 more than the first annual plunges. Our athletes plunged as well. They get involved with fundraising and do their part."
The money raised, Gilli said, goes to support the athletic programs for participants in Rockland County.
"The mission is to provide year-round competition sports training, at no cost to athletes, their families or caregivers. So these donations help us defer the cost of equipment, hotel stays, transportation, meals. It helps so much," said Gilli.