Department of Parks
Kentucky’s Park Rangers Raise Nearly $16,000 for Special Olympics
FRANKFORT, Ky. – Kentucky’s Park Rangers were “freezing for a reason” at Lake Cumberland on Feb. 25, raising nearly $16,000 in cold cash for Special Olympics of Kentucky by taking the “Polar Bear Plunge.”
The Rangers collected more than any other group for the event. Ranger Matt Cope of Kingdom Come State Park was the top individual fund-raiser. He raised $5,003 and was named “King of the Polar Bear Plunge.”
This was the third year for the Polar Bear Plunge at Lake Cumberland. More than 80 people, ranging in age from 5 to 65, took the plunge off the rear of houseboats into the 44-degree waters of Lake Cumberland as hundreds of spectators looked on from the marina’s launching ramp and causeway. Altogether, the jumpers raised $40,175 for Special Olympics of Kentucky.
The event at Lake Cumberland is one of six polar bear plunge fund-raisers held throughout the Commonwealth each year.
Special Olympics promote year-round sports training and athletic competition for more than one million children and adults with intellectual disabilities. The goal of Special Olympics is for the participants to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.
The Kentucky State Park System is composed of 52 state parks plus an interstate park shared with Virginia. The Department of Parks, an agency of the Commerce Cabinet, operates 17 resort parks with lodges -- more than any other state. Each year, Kentucky parks draw 7 million visitors and contribute $317 million to the economy. For more information on Kentucky parks, visit our Web site at http://www.parks.ky.gov