Public invited to participate in 2024 Polar Plunge to support Dare County Special Olympics athletes – OBX Today

The Dare County Special Olympics invites the public to take part in the organization’s annual Polar Plunge fundraising event beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 9, 2024 at Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head. Over 300 participants have registered for this year’s event, breaking Dare County’s record for participation and raising over $40,000 to date.

The schedule of events for the 2024 Polar Plunge event will be as follows:

Logo of a polar bear holding a sign which reads, "2024 OBX Polar Plunge - Special Olympics North Carolina"10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. — Registration Opens
(All participants must sign a waiver and attain a wristband to plunge, regardless of pre-registration status.)

11 a.m. — Opening Ceremony & Awards

11:20 a.m. — Safety Brief

11:30 a.m. — Polar Plunge Begins
(Due to the large number of registrants, the plunge will take place in three 10-minute rounds. Participants’ plunge rounds will be designated on wristbands at registration.)

12:30 p.m. — Polar Plunge Event Ends

Before the plunge, an opening ceremony will be held, featuring a message from a Special Olympics Global Messenger athlete as well as the lighting of the “Flame of Hope” torch by uniformed officers. Awards will also be given to participants in the following categories:

Best Individual Costume
Best Team Costume
Best Chicken Costume
Cool Schools Top Team Fundraiser
Largest Plunge Team
Top Individual Fundraiser
Top Team Fundraiser
Image of a group of people standing together smiling before jumping in the ocean. One individual is dressed in a polar bear costume.

In addition to the plunge and awards ceremony, the event will also include raffles for plungers and donors, a photo booth, Special Olympics merchandise sales and live radio broadcasting with Beach 104, as well as changing tents and coffee and hot chocolate for the plungers.

The Dare County Special Olympics is still seeking day-of event volunteers to assist with parking, registration, donations, tent management, awards and refreshments. If you are interested in volunteering at this event, please contact Dare County Special Olympics Program Coordinator Sandy Pace at or 252-475-9270 by Monday, March 8, 2024.

The public is invited to attend this event, both as plungers or as bystanders to cheer on the brave individuals who plunge into the ocean. Special Olympics volunteers will be onsite to register participants and to accept cash or credit card donations. The funds raised during this event by donors and event sponsors will provide year-round sports training, competition, leadership opportunities and health services to Special Olympics athletes in our community.

Image of a group of people wading into and out of a chilly ocean.

If you would like to register to participate in the Dare County Special Olympics Polar Plunge, please visit Individuals may register online or make a donation to an existing registrant or team on this website leading up to the event.*

*Please note that all who pre-register online must still check in at the registration table to sign a printed waiver and attain a wristband.