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Virtual Special Olympics

The pandemic has caused a lot of local events and traditions to be canceled but everyone has been able to adapt, including Special Olympics of Pennsylvania. Hundreds won’t jump into Canoe Creek this year for their annual winter games Polar Plunge, but you can still get involved at home.

Instead of a plunge into ice cold water, Special Olympics of Pennsylvania is asking people to get outside and pop a balloon filled with water over their head for their Polar Pop.

“Anyone can get involved this year that’s one really cool thing about it being virtual instead of in-person. We’re not limited by physical location anymore so the entire state is celebrating and all its done is made our party a lot more bigger and a lot more fun,” said Jessica Kury an event director with Special Olympics of Pennsylvania.

Kury says each participant pays $20 to register for the Polar Pop and the hope is that they go on to raise $50 to support SOPA. If you’d like to register you can here until February 26th. The Money raised makes all the difference for SOPA athletes, which allows them to train and compete without having to worry about any costs.

“The goal when Special Olympics was established was that no athlete or their family members would have to pay to participate. Special Olympics is a lot more than just competition there are leadership opportunities, there’s learning and growth opportunities for our athletes as well,” Said Kury.

Special Olympics of Pennsylvania asks that everyone shares videos of their Polar Pop on social media with the hashtag ‘Freezin for a Reason,’ to inspire others to join. Local law enforcement participates in the polar plunge every year and had already made the pledge to join in on the Polar Pop. Troopers hope that the community will join them and help support SOPA athletes.

“I’ve been doing this for a few years and just the joy you get out of the athletes themselves they really look forward to it and they put a great amount of work into competing and going to the events,” said Trooper Christopher Fox.

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