Dive into cold this winter & get ‘freezin’ for a reason at the annual Special Olympics Polar Plunge

It’s that time of year again where Central Floridians can take a cold and invigorating plunge into cold water for a cause.

Special Olympics Florida will hold its annual Polar Plunge fundraiser at Aquatica this weekend.


Every year, hundreds of people turn out to brave the ‘somewhat’ chilly weather and waters and take the plunge to raise money for the Special Olympic Florida athletes.

The event becomes a giant pool party complete with music, food and themed costumes.

Each year, they turn out by the hundreds to help Special Olympics Florida athletes and brave the (somewhat) chilly waters of Aquatica. The event becomes a giant pool party complete with music, food and themed costumes. This year, some very special guests will add celebrity buzz to the day.

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“Aquatica Orlando is delighted to host the Polar Plunge, rallying support for the outstanding mission of Special Olympics Florida,” said Brad Gilmour, Park President at SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment - Discovery Cove & Aquatica Orlando. “We eagerly welcome all plunge participants that will join us in making a meaningful impact for this incredible cause.”

The Orlando event is one of three plunges Special Olympics Florida holds annually, with others taking place in Tampa and St. Johns.

“The Polar Plunge is the coolest fundraiser in the state,” said Special Olympics Florida President & CEO Sherry Wheelock. “We are incredibly grateful to our partners and hosts at Aquatica for making this such a fun, exciting, and inspiring event. They are truly committed to championing the athletes of Special Olympics Florida.”

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This year, guests will be joined by Special Olympics athletes and Central Floridians, James Holder and Ryan Letcher.

James Holder, from Brevard County, has been a Special Olympics athlete since 2005, and has competed in track & field, softball, volleyball, bocce, bowling, snowshoe, basketball, soccer, golf and currently competes in swimming and stand-up paddle.

Ryan Letcher, from Orange County, has been participating in Special Olympics for more than 15 years, and is an Athlete Leader who has competed in several sports, but swimming is his specialty. In 2022, he captured a gold medal in swimming at the Special Olympics USA Games in Orlando.

The Orlando Polar Plunge at Aquatica takes place on Saturday, Feb. 10 at 10 a.m.

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To be part of the Polar Plunge, CLICK HERE.

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