ROCHESTER, Minn. - Even Covid-19 wasn't going to stop this year's Rochester Polar Plunge. Delayed by a month, the 2021 version came with a few changes.
"Number one we have no ice as you can tell," Olmsted County Sheriff Kevin Torgerson said. "We love getting out there on the platform and jumping in and running out. This year everyone's got to do double duty, they got to run out, go around the flag pole and come back in. We're jumping only 26 people in 15 minutes. Normally we'll jump 100 people in 15 minutes."
Plungers trekked through the freezing water at Foster Arend Park Saturday. This year's event was held virtually meaning no spectators, aside from a few keen fishers and was streamed online.
The plunge raised money and awareness from Special Olympics, a cause close to the heart of Torgerson.
"Special Olympics gives them an outlet, and it's an outlet for life," he said. "The Rochester Flyers is over 300 athletes. They're adults, they work in our communities and this is their outlet."
Many things are different this year, but the one thing that stayed the same is the ice cold water.
"You still get the feeling and with the wind whipping like it is today, you're feeling it," Torgerson said. "It's still a plunge."
For the third year in-a-row, KIMT News 3 took the plunge, raising more than $1,900.
"Obviously we care about it, it's something close to our heart," KIMT News 3 Daybreak Anchor Brooke McKivergan said. "We're just really thankful to not only give back to the Rochester community but that money just to the Special Olympics."
Torgerson is thankful to those who braved the cold water for a good cause.
"Just very happy that people trusted us and the plan is working and they're having just a great time," he said.