Legislators Polar-Plunging Into The Cold

By: Alyssa Fenske Email
By: Alyssa Fenske Email

LANSING (WILX)-- You'd have to be crazy to jump in the water outside today, or a politician.

Despite the windchill nearing 20-below, people took the Legislative Polar Plunge Thursday.

Jumping in with smiles on their faces, you wouldn't guess it's one of the coldest days of the year.

"It was freezing cold but it was for a good cause and I'm happy to be here," said Rep. Tim Greimel (D) Auburn Hills.

"This was the coldest plunge, but the best one yet," said Rep. Al Pscholka (R) Coloma.

More than thirty people jumped this year. Together they raised $30,000 dollars for Special Olympics Michigan.
But with the temperature so low it almost wasn't allowed to go on. Safety was a concern for those jumping in and those standing around.

"In the end the decision came down to the plunge coordinators as well as the dive team. After talking to the dive team they figured they weren't fearing for anyones safety," said Aaron Mills, spokesperson for Special Olympics Michigan.

Everyone ended up surviving the jump, just a few numb fingers and toes. Nobody stayed outside long .

"The first thing you think about when you get in is how do I get out of here," said one of the jumpers from AT&T.

Not everyone was willing to risk jumping into the water Thursday. It's a little different of a situation, but Michigan State Police Academy was supposed to do a training jump on Thrusday and Friday. They decided to reschedule.

"We decided to not do it due to the windchill and the air tempature. We have recruits trying to remove themselves from the water and this weather would pose risk for frostbite." said Trooper David Cope.

It's not that they're not as tough as Michigan's legislators, but Trooper Cope points out they won't have the capitol as shelter.

"We'll be doing it outside in an actual pond with blowing snow."

The academy will try again next week and hopes the weather will be warmer.


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