Frequently Asked Questions

Event Questions

As an established Special Olympics and Law Enforcement Torch Run event throughout North America, the Polar Plunge has a lengthy history of people laughing and splashing for a cause. The Polar Plunge is a unique opportunity for athletes, families, students, law enforcement members, businesses, and celebrities to support Special Olympics athletes by jumping into the freezing waters of Vancouver’s oceanfront.
The Polar Plunge is taking place at Kitsilano Beach. The pre-plunge area will be directly across from Cornwall Avenue next to the tennis courts.
Anyone can plunge, but only registered Plungers will be allowed in the water. Participants under the age of 18 must have a parent or guardian sign a waiver form. No one of any age is allowed to be carried into the water.
The Polar Plunge benefits more than 4,600 Special Olympics BC athletes across the province, who compete and train year-round in 18 different sports. To learn more about Special Olympics BC, click here.
Every participant raises a minimum of $75 ($50 for students) in order to plunge on event day, which also gets you a commemorative Polar Plunge toque, access to the plunge site and eligibility to win awesome prizes! But the more you raise, the more you will get. See our incentives and prizes page for more details.

And don’t forget to check out our fundraising tools to help you raise your minimums and go above and beyond!

Charitable contributions are non-refundable, and the minimum Plunge fundraising requirement is considered a charitable contribution and is therefore also non-refundable.
The Plunge will happen rain, sleet, snow, or shine!
• A towel to dry off and warm up with.
• Old shoes, aquatic shoes, etc., if you don’t want to plunge barefoot. Don’t forget to bring a pair of dry shoes to wear afterwards!
• A duffel bag, backpack, garbage bag, etc. It’s a good idea to bring a bag for dry clothes and your Plunge incentive, as well as a plastic bag for your wet clothes after you’ve plunged.
• Another Plunger! Recruit a friend, family member, co-worker, or acquaintance and get them to take the Plunge with you. It’s always more fun with friends!

Plunge in style by wearing a zany costume guaranteed to create a memorable experience, or wear what’s comfortable for you.

Don’t miss your chance to win prizes by entering our costume contest happening right before the Plunge!

We have streamlined our check-in process, but can never predict when crowds will be heaviest. We encourage you to arrive early to check in on the day of the event, and enjoy the Plunge atmosphere. Check-in/registration will open at 10 a.m.
• Plunger check-in/registration will open at 10 a.m. and the Opening Ceremonies will begin at 11:15 a.m. Arrive early to make sure you allow lots of time to check in and take advantage of all Plunge Day has to offer.
• All participants must check in prior to plunging to turn in funds, receive their incentives, and receive access materials to be allowed on the site.
• Once you have claimed your incentive, we cannot adjust to a different item at a later time.
• Do NOT dive or flip into the water.
• Leave valuables at home or with a spectator. Special Olympics BC is not responsible for items that are lost or stolen.
• We advise you not to plunge after drinking alcohol. Intoxicated people will not be permitted to plunge.
• Wear your Plunge costume under the outfit you wear to the event. This way, you don’t have to worry about changing and can stay warm longer!
• Bring along warm clothes to wear after you plunge that are easy to put on. The last thing you want to deal with when you’re cold and wet are clumsy zippers and buttons!
• Carpool! Parking can be crowded, so help us out by coming as a group.
• Invite a friend to watch, take pictures, and hold onto your dry stuff for you.

Participant Questions

Contact Charlotte Taylor to get help registering online: ctaylor@specialolympics.bc.ca or 604.737.3056
Yes. In order to be a part of a team, you must register online and join that team. If you register the day of the Plunge, you will be considered an individual. You will still be able to plunge with your group, but your fundraising efforts and records will be listed as an individual.
Plunge posters, team and individual fundraising toolkits, and more are all available on the Tools page.
We do our best to order enough incentives to cover all the Plungers who participate, but if there is a large increase in Plunge registrations we may not have everyone’s incentives available on site. If you do not receive your incentives the day of the Plunge, they will be mailed to you as soon after the event as possible.
Plungers cannot change their incentive after the event. Incentives are given out based on what your fundraising total is on the day of the event. Any funds turned in after the event will still go towards you fundraising total, but will not change your incentive.

Fundraising Questions

You can make a donation by calling us at 604.737.3056 and giving us your information over the phone. You can also bring or give your chosen Plunger a cheque (written out to “Special Olympics BC”) or cash donation, which you/they will then turn in at the event.

You can also mail in your donation to the address below. Be sure to include the participant’s name so we know who to give credit to.

Special Olympics BC
Attn: Polar Plunge – Participant’s name
210 – 3701 Hastings St.
Burnaby, BC V5C 2H6

Cheques can be written out to “Special Olympics BC”
Yes! We have a Plunger Pledge Form you can download and bring with you on Plunge Day when you hand in your cash and/or cheques. Any funds raised online will be automatically credited to your fundraising efforts.
Special Olympics BC will generate a tax receipt for anyone who contributes $20 or more by cheque or cash and for whom we have complete and accurate contact information (name, mailing address). In order to provide any donors off-line with a tax receipt, you will need to keep track of their information with the Plunger Pledge Form and turn this over at check-in along with the matching donations.

All donations that are made online via credit card automatically receive a donation receipt via email for any amount.

Our check-in system will have totals for your online fundraising up until March 3, and will be added to anything additional you may turn in on site.