Up North Lodge to host this year's Marquette County Polar Plunge

GWINN, Mich. (WLUC) - There will be some big changes with this year's Marquette County Polar Plunge; the biggest being venue. This year's plunge is moving from Marquette Mountain, to the Up North Lodge in Gwinn. The Lodge has a long history helping with the Special Olympics, often hosting bike nights to raise money for athletes.

"The Up North Lodge does have an awesome clientele,” said Carl White, coordinator for the Marquette County Polar Plunge. “There's people that are always out there. The food's great, the atmosphere is great and they are more than willing to help out with the Special Olympics events."

The Up North Lodge said they are excited about the change of venue, and ready to get to work planning.

"To be given the opportunity to give back to the Special Olympics, and to the Torchlight event is a true honor," said Jesie Melchori, General Manager of the Up North Lodge.

If you've been to the Up North Lodge, you'd know there isn't a major source of water in the immediate vicinity, an issue planners have already taken into account.

"We're actually going to bring a pool in,” said White. “We do a lot of plunges across the state, and the vast majority of them aren't held in a lake or river, or anything like that, they're held in a pool."

This year's plunge will be held on March 17, which is also St. Patrick's Day, and the Lodge plans to celebrate accordingly.

"We are going to have a St. Paddy's Day party with green drinks and food specials all day long,” said Melchori. “I was also told that the plunge water will be free, so I’m really excited about that."

They'll need plenty of help organizing and hosting the event, and ask all those who are interested to help, as the money raised goes directly to helping athletes compete in the Special Olympics at the local, state, and national levels.

"Just the sheer look of enjoyment on their face from competing, and whether they win or not, they don't care,” said White. “They just want to be out there and participate, and have a good time."

To find out how you can help with, or participate in the plunge, visit the plunge website, or the Special Olympics website.

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