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Release: 17th Annual Kirksville Polar Plunge raises $18,500 for SOMO


KIRKSVILLE – The 17th Annual Kirksville Polar Plunge on Saturday, March 2 at Thousand Hills State Park in Kirksville was a splashing success, raising $18,500 to date. A total 72 brave men and women from around the area donned Hawaiian-themed costumes and swimwear to take a chilly dip into Thousand Hills. Their Reason for Freezin’ wasthe athletes of Special Olympics Missouri (SOMO).

Online fundraising is still ongoing. Organizers of the Plunge still hope to raise an additional $16,000 to reach the goal of $35,000. Donations can be made on our online fundraising page.

Top individual fundraisers:

  • 1st Place – Kayla Purnell
  • 2nd Place – Patty Sutton
  • 3rd Place – Holly Turner

Top team fundraisers:

  • Top Fundraising Team – Moberly Correctional Center Cert Team
  • Top Law Enforcement Team – Lady Bugs
  • Top Fundraising School – Ohana

Competition for the Golden Plunger was steep this year. Participants were encouraged to come in costume and compete for the chance to take home the “Golden Plunger.”

  • Group 1st Place – Alpha Ladybugs
  • Group 2nd Place – Moberly Correctional Center Cert Team
  • Group 3rd Place – Ohana’s
  • Individual 1st Place – Stitch-Kayla Purnell
  • Individual 2nd Place – Magnum PI-Robert Murrell
  • Individual 3rd Place – Cow-Jennifer McKim

SOMO was lucky to have three of Plunge Ambassadors helping with this event. Our Plunge Ambassadors for this year’s Plunge were Patty Sutton, Heather Lammers and Jared Niemeyer. They are all SOMO athletes, and they worked for months to help spread awareness of the Plunge!

“I always plunge and have a great time,” Sutton said. “You would too if you came out to take the Plunge!”

This year’s event was held in conjunction with the Linn County Sheriff’s Department, MO Conservation and the Department of Natural Resources.

Thank you so much to our sponsors!

  • Our Polar Level sponsor is Kirksville Toyota
  • Our Tundra Level sponsors are Magers Construction and Adair County Prosecuting Attorney David Goring.

For more information about the Polar Plunge, visit

Media is welcome to download and use any pictures from our Flickr page here!