GODFREY, Ill. – Winter weather didn’t stop more than 35 people from making their way into ice-cold pond water at Glazewood Park in Godfrey, Illinois, Saturday morning.
“You know it’s not too bad it could be worse it could be colder but a great time for a great cause,” Freezing for Funds participant John Giertz said.
The first Freezing for Funds helped raise funds for one local charity, while many had the chance to win the more the $2,500 raised.
Giertz was one participant who enjoyed the rush of running in the water, then hoped his charity would win.
Each person who donated $25 wrote the name of a local charity of their choice on a piece of paper, then a winner was chosen.
“It had that raffle kind of excitement to it. Plus, the idea of doing something for charity,” Giertz said.
He said it was fun running in the water and decided not to wear shoes, instead of going with water-ready footwear.
“I thought that was the smart play considering I could throw the socks on after. I didn’t realize it was quite so muddy, so the plan was about halfway right,” Giertz said.
Freezing for Funds co-founder Craig Lombardi said the event’s first year went great.
“It’s taking off people love it, and it’s going to go to a local one so it’s kind of cool for us,” he said.
The Alton Athletic Association was the eventual winner of more than $2,500.
Lombardi thanked the community and local leaders for their help and is looking to another cold Saturday morning next Winter
“What I love most about it is they want to do this every year. So, they want to make this an annual event and they want to build on this,” Lombardi said.