Nothing says winter quite like a dip in the pool. That’s the idea behind the Polar Plunge — a frosty challenge now in its 10th year that supports Haywood Waterways Association.

This year’s plunge will be held at the Lake Junaluska pool on Saturday, Feb. 12. The depth of plunge is a personal choice, from a dip of the toe to a full-body immersion. To liven things up even more, there’s a contest for best costume and best plunge.

There is also a COVID-friendly option this year called the Plunge Challenge. Plungers can pick the date, time and location to take the plunge at their convenience.

Spectators are encouraged to come and root for the plungers at the Lake Junaluska pool on Feb. 12. The plunge will be held from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., with check-in for plungers beginning at 10 a.m.

All proceeds benefit Haywood Waterway’s Kids in the Creek and environmental education programs. Now in its 10th year, the Polar Plunge remains a popular community event, bringing together public officials, schools, businesses, churches, families and others to support kids and clean water.

“The Plunge is a great fundraiser for our education programs, as well as a great friend-raiser and tool for raising awareness of clean water,” said Eric Romaniszyn, Haywood Waterways’ Executive Director.

All ages can participate. The cost is $25 for adults (or $10 for youth under 18), which includes a free T-shirt and hot chili lunch.

Plungers are encouraged to raise sponsorships and donations to support their plunge. Prizes are awarded to the top fundraisers, as well as to the organizations with the most individual plungers.

You can sign up to be a plunger or make donations toward a plunger by going to the URL tiny.cc/HWA10thPlunge, or by contacting Haywood Waterways at 828-476-4667 or info@haywoodwaterways.org.