TREASURE LAKE — While many people were cozy and warm in their homes Saturday morning, approximately one dozen participants braved the frigid temperatures and plunged into Treasure Lake for the annual DuBois Area YMCA Polar Bear Plunge.
The event, held in cooperation with Treasure Lake’s 2019 Winterfest, benefits the YMCA’s Strong Kids Campaign.
Paula DuBois of the YMCA said $1,500 was raised for the campaign.
“It keeps the prices reasonable or free for our youth activities,” said DuBois. “We never want a child to be turned away.”
“It was cold. I was surprised, somebody thought it was going to be heated,” joked YMCA Executive Director Dan Dowling after he took the plunge.
The temperature outside was 24 degrees and the water was bitter cold.
Dowling said he took part in the event for about the 10th time and enjoys helping out a good cause.
By the shore, an area of the lake ice had been cleared by members of the Sandy Township Volunteer Fire Department, who waited in the water in their diving gear to assist participants, if needed, once they took the plunge.
“Those divers are the best, they’ve done a great job,” said Dowling.
DuBois said she was pleased with the turnout of both participants and spectators.
Back again this year was the Chicken Coop for people too chicken to take the plunge. A total of seven people participated and placed a donation. Donations were also placed to get someone back out of the Coop.
Following the plunge, Treasure Lake’s Winterfest, a fun family day, continued with sub-zero winter games, a chili and chowder contest, ice skating and karaoke in the evening.
“I think people just like having things to do in the winter and, even if it is cold outside, we can still have fun,” said Lori Corcoran, who is responsible for Treasure Lake’s recreational offerings and facilities.