SALEM, February 3, 2024 – Oregonians have a longstanding and beloved winter tradition of Plunging into icy waters to raise money and awareness for Special Olympics Oregon (SOOR) athletes. Donning their wildest costumes and swimming attire, more than 3,500 brave (possibly crazy) supporters will gather across the state this winter to take the Polar Plunge. The event historically takes place in locations throughout the State (Portland, Corvallis, Eugene, Bend, Medford, and Salem) with our 3rd Annual, State Capital Polar Plunge & 5K Fun Run, taking place at Illahe Hills Country Club in Salem, February 3, 2024.

With water temperatures registering below 40 degrees, this rambunctious annual event continues to make a splash as one of the most chilling and thrilling fundraisers in Oregon. Dozens of local teams made up of students, law enforcement, gyms, corporate partners, and general thrill seekers will sprint into the chilly river waters to show support to their local athletes. The Polar Plunge has been taking place in Oregon since 2006, making this the 19th year of Plunging for SOOR athletes.

Participants will raise money in support of those living with intellectual disabilities – the largest disability population in the state. Each person participating in the Polar Plunge or Polar Fun Run commits to fundraising on behalf of SOOR, with a statewide goal of raising $995,000. Anyone wishing to take part in the Polar Plunge for Special Olympics Oregon can register and get the full details at

The 3rd Annual State Capital Polar Plunge is made possible by the generous support of statewide and local sponsors: Law Enforcement Torch Run of Oregon, Embold Credit Union, First Republic Bank, Lithia Driveway, Mattress World Northwest, Spirit Mountain, Willamette Health Council, DSP Connections, ServPro, and Pretty Good Printing.

About Special Olympics Oregon

Special Olympics Oregon (SOOR) serves more than 5,000 Oregon athletes with intellectual disabilities year-round and statewide through the organization’s life changing sports programs. SOOR athletes gain self-confidence, social competency, 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. Learn more at

Media Contact – Jessica Carpenter / 503-983-5752 / [email protected]