4th Annual Penguin Plunge Helps Women With Breast Cancer

Hobart and William Smith community members will join the fight against cancer at 4 p.m. this afternoon by splashing in frigid waters of Seneca Lake during this year's Penguin Plunge. Organized by Hope House, the annual fundraising event will donate the money raised by participants to provide financial aid for families fighting breast cancer in the Finger Lakes region.

The Penguin Plunge, which has had event attendance of 150 people, draws students, faculty, and staff to Seneca Lake where they jump into the icy water in a show of charitable support. Teams and clubs from campus come to brace the chilly water with commendable enthusiasm and creative costumes.

Photo by Kevin Colton, HWS Photographer

More photos from last year's plunge

Should students wear costumes this year? Julie Kunzman, house manager for Hope House, says, "Yes, costumes are encouraged!" Kunzman is working with Sodexo and the College Store to offer prizes for costumes.

All the event proceeds will go Embrace Your Sisters. A partnership exists between the organization and HWS through Hope House, which is dedicated to promoting cancer awareness and doing volunteer work for the cause. Embrace Your Sisters is located in Ontario County and funds emergency care to families in need of assistance when facing cancer, including medical bills and other necessary expenses. The event has raised more than $2,000 in donations through the generosity and zeal of participants of years past.

According to Kunzman, participants must sign a waiver to jump. It costs $5 to participate in the actual plunge. Those who do not wish to jump in the water have the opportunity to sponsor someone else or an entire group for $5, as well. Those who anticipate attending the plunge should look out for $2 candy cane goodie bags in Scandling Campus Center, where they will have the chance to get a goodie bag with a ticket for a free plunge.

The HWS community has the opportunity to participate in this exciting experience and feel good about making a difference in fighting breast cancer. Transportation is scheduled to be provided from campus to the site of the plunge. Two vans will shuttle from Medbery Parking Lot to the state park. Event organizers encourage attendees to dress in a warm costume because the forecast predicts the temperature to be around 40 degrees.

For more information, visit the Penguin Plunge 2012 Facebook page.

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