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by Karen Goff January 13, 2015 at 11:00 am 1 Comment

Virginia Polar Dip 2014More than 100 brave people will jump into Lake Anne at the annual Freezin’ for a Reason Virginia Polar Dip on Feb. 7.

The annual event — which attracts chilly participants in swimsuits as well as a wide variety of whacky costumes to the dock at Lake Anne Plaza — raises money for Camp Sunshine, a Maine summer overnight experience for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families.

The event warmup begins at noon. The dip begins at 2 p.m. Last year’s Virginia Polar Dip raised more than $85,000.

The Virginia Polar Dip was started in 2008 by the Toth family of Oakton. They first attended Camp Sunshine as a participating family in 1996,  when their then-3-year-old daughter Jennifer was a cancer patient at age 3.

After Jennifer participated in a Camp Sunshine Polar Dip in New Jersey, her family decided to bring the event to Virginia in order to help more local families. Since 2008, 931 people have participated in the Virginia Polar Dip, raising over $395,000 for the camp.

The event will be emceed for the fifth year in a row by 97.1 WASH-FM morning show radio personality Chilli Amar.

This year’s goal is to raise $100,000, which will allow 50 families from the Mid-Atlantic area to attend Camp Sunshine.

Each participant will raise a minimum of $100 for the “opportunity” to plunge into the chilly Lake Anne, which some years needs a crew to break through the ice for the event.

The event is sponsored by Lake Anne Plaza, Whole Foods Market Reston, Reston Lifestyle Magazine, Tropical Smoothie Cafe, David Madison Photography, Reston Association, Reston Community Center, Spotted MP (Marketing + Public Relations), Kalypso’s Sports Tavern, Fairfax Christian School, 97.1 WASH-FM, Salon Khouri, Fusion 360, Small Change Consignment, and the Sheraton Reston Hotel.

For more information about the event or to register to participate, visit the event’s home page. Spectators are welcome free of charge.

Photo: Freezin’ for a Reason 2014/file photo

by Karen Goff January 8, 2014 at 10:45 am 1 Comment

Freezin' for a Reason 2013/File Photo

Who wants to jump in the lake for a good cause?

The 7th annual Freezin’ for a Reason Virginia Polar Dip returns to Lake Anne on Feb. 1. The event benefits Camp Sunshine, a summer camp for children (and their families) with life-threatening illnesses.

Last year, intrepid Reston-area participants — many of whom are in wacky costumes — raised more than $70,000 to aid the campers.

Here is what you need to know:

  • Event start time is 1 p.m. Jumping begins at the dock at 2 p.m. Registered participants can take a full jump  or a “Chicken Dip” (feet only).
  • $100 minimum donation to plunge.  Free to spectators.  Rain or Shine (will be rescheduled if major snow storm is forecast).
  • The event is emceed by 97.1 WASH-FM morning show radio personality Chilli Amar.

The Virginia Polar Dip was started in 2008 by the Toth family of Oakton, whose daughter, Jennifer, had attended Camp Sunshine after a battle with cancer at age 3 (she is in her 20s now and doing great).

Since 2008, 682 people have participated in the Virginia Polar Dip — one of 11 Polar Dips held around the country — to raise more than $306,000 for the camp.  The camp organizes 11 polar dips on the East Coast each year.

This year’s goal is to raise $100,000, which will allow 50 families from the Mid-Atlantic area to attend Camp Sunshine in Maine.

For more information about the event or to register to participate, visit www.freezinforareason.com or become a Facebook Fan (Virginia Polar Dip) and view pictures from previous dips.

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