Carpentersville police raise $10,000 for Special Olympics
Carpentersville police took the plunge to raise money for Special Olympics athletes in Illinois.
On Saturday, the police department's Polar Plunge drew about 25 plungers, including Chief Patrick Hoey, Village President John Skillman and Trustee Humberto Garcia. In all, the group, comprised mainly of Carpentersville police officers, raised nearly $10,000 for the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Illinois.
Typically, plungers join in regional events held the same weekend. But police departments were given the option of joining one of the larger regional plunges or hosting their own local event. Carpentersville police opted for the latter.
"We thought we'd get more exposure and raise more money if we did one here locally," Hoey said.
Carpentersville Police Community Engagement Officer Kara Burroughs and Meg Krase, the department's social worker, organized the first-time village event, which drew about 100 people.
The Carpentersville Fire Department loaned out its Porta-Tank so participants could take the plunge. The 3-foot-deep portable pool was filled with about 3,000 gallons of 50-ish degree water and roughly 40 pounds of ice cubes for added measure. Although it was not as cold as lake water, the pool was cold enough, Hoey joked.
"I was a little nervous," said Skillman, who did a Google search to prepare for his introduction to the Polar Plunge, "but it was fun, and we had a good turnout."
Skillman hit the water with a belly flop. Jumping right into the cold water was a bit of a shock, but all for a good cause, he said.
Participants had to raise at least $100 to take the plunge. Some of the top donors included McHenry County businessman and Republican gubernatorial candidate Gary Rabine, who donated $2,501 to the cause and took the plunge. Skillman and Hoey raised $1,500 and $1,000, respectively, Hoey said.
Donations for the Carpentersville Polar Plunge can be made through March at polarplunge.soill.org and searching for the Carpentersville Police Department's team.