FOX LAKE – Jeanette Letmanski is going to find an 80s prom dress and jump into the Fox Lake.
Letmanski, a life skills teacher for Woodstock District 200, is jumping into the freezing Fox Lake in her quirky costume to help support the Special Olympics. The annual event is set for
1 p.m. Feb. 22 at Fox Lake on 71 Nippersink Blvd.
The Fox Lake Polar Plunge raises tens of thousands of dollars each year for the Special Olympics, and Letmanski’s team of District 200 teachers, staff and students has been one of the top fundraisers the past three years. Last year her group raised about $5,000 dressed as minions and this year her crew is on pace to surpass $3,000 as a 1980s prom party.
“Special Olympics does so much for our district programs, so this is just a way we can give back a little,” she said. “It’s a fun day, and great to see so many families and schools come together.”
The event already has raised $34,914 from the 371 participants signed up. District 200 is behind only the Lake County Sheriff’s Office in money raised. The event is aiming to raise $130,000.
People interested in braving the chilly waters still can register for the event until 7 a.m. Feb. 22. Organizers ask that each participant raise a minimum of $75 to enter. Reaching the minimum also gets participants the official Polar Plunge hooded sweatshirt and admission to the post-plunge party. Other prizes are awarded at the $250, $500 and $1,000 levels.
“The cold factor kind of scares people away, but it shouldn’t,” Letmanski said. “The whole event is great.”