Hundreds Set to Plunge into the Icy Deschutes River for the 2018 Polar Plunge


Cold water isn’t enough to stop the excitement (and crazy costumes) of the Polar Plunge – in fact – it makes it even more fun!

Donning their wildest costumes and swimming attire, hundreds of brave souls are preparing to take the plunge into the frigid Deschutes River, Saturday February 10 at 10am at Bend’s Riverbend Park for the 2018 Oregon Law Enforcement Polar Plunge presented by Fred Meyer. Benefitting Special Olympics Oregon (SOOR), participants will raise more than half a million dollars statewide in support of those with intellectual disabilities – the largest disability population in the state.

With the water temperature at about 46°, this rambunctious annual event makes a splash every year as one of the most exciting and engaging fundraisers in the state. Dozens of local teams will sprint into the Deschutes River to show their bravery and earn the money they raised leading up to the event.  Each participant raised a minimum of $50, with many raising significantly more for the honor of jumping into freezing water. Bend is one of five Oregon cities hosting plunges with more than 4,000 supporters taking part statewide.

There’s still time to join the fun! People wishing to take the Plunge for Special Olympics Oregon can register at

The Bend Police Department will be joined by officers, personnel and support from Redmond Police Department, Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office and Deschutes County Juvenile Community Justice. In addition, teams from dozens of local businesses and schools will share in the fun.

The Bend plunge is made possible by the generous support of statewide and local sponsors: Fred Meyer, Les Schwab, Nike, PacificSource Health Plans|Legacy Health, Aerotek, Lithia Auto Stores, Princess Athletic, Café Yumm, Old Mill District, Cascade Disposal, Hooker Creek Construction Materials, Advanced Systems, The Twins 98.3, Bend Broadband, The Bulletin, and News Channel 21.

About Special Olympics Oregon
Special Olympics Oregon serves more than 13,000 participants with intellectual disabilities year-round and statewide through the organization’s life changing sports programs. Athletes gain self-confidence, social competency, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills, and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes, and the community. Learn more at
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