Rapid City Polar Plunge raises $65,000 for South Dakota Special Olympics Athletes

There were a total of 112 divers that made the brave plunge.

RAPID CITY, S.D. — What started out as a cooler Saturday turned into a colder one.

A polar plunge was held at Black Hills Harley Davidson that benefited Specials Olympics athletes in South Dakota.

There were a total of 112 divers that made the brave plunge while also raising $65,000 for the cause.

“This is one of our big fundraisers that that we do so that our athletes have the ability to compete and travel to competitions and and just spread the word,” said Dave Stratton, the Assistant Director of the Law Enforcement Torch Run.

Some participants had done their share of plunges before, like the Gust family.

“This is about our fourth year doing it,” Victor Gust. “We did it for the last few years with the Douglas Patriots out of Box Elder and then this year we decided to join in with the (Pennington County) Sheriff’s Office and do it out with their team.”

Despite there being some hesitancy from many plungers…

“I just want to get it over with,” said Kayleigh Gust.

NewsCenter1’s team raised $668 for the cause.

To help make sure everyone got out of the frigid water safely, first responders were on the standby.

“If they go into shock, I mean the biggest thing is to get them out of the water as soon as possible onto dry land so we can render aid,” said Matt Almeida, with the Rapid City Police Department.

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