RAYMOND — Superintendent Tina McCoy and Principal Steven Woodward are pleased to announce Raymond High School students raised over $37,000 for this year’s Penguin Plunge.
In all, the group raised $37,352, blowing their goal of just $1,000 out of the water and raising the most of any participating school in the state.
The Penguin Plunge is an annual event in which hundreds of people from New Hampshire high schools dive into the Atlantic Ocean in support of the Special Olympics of New Hampshire and its partner organization, Project UNIFY.
This year’s plunge was dedicated to Jeni Plender, a member of the class of 2021 who passed away in 2016 after she was diagnosed with a malignant lung tumor.
Rather than have the 108 participants race into the ocean on Saturday, Feb. 13, the Raymond Fire Department brought the waves to them. Students, staff and their families gathered at Raymond High School made snow angels and were sprayed down by the Fire Department’s tanker truck. Participants were socially distanced from those outside of their household and wore masks or face coverings to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
To view video from the day, click here.
A smaller group of 11 staff members made the trip to Hampton Beach on Sunday, Feb. 7 as well to run into the ocean with others from across the state.
This is the fifth year that the group, led by math teacher Bill Hayes, has participated in the Penguin Plunge. The event has grown increasingly popular with the school community over that time. Last year, the group raised more than $47,000.
“The RHS Ramguins started in 2016 with only six kids and me,” Hayes said. “Since then, we have grown to an average of 112 participants per year and have led the state in high school funds raised and the number of participants for the last three years. The kids are the best and the number of four year plungers only continues to grow.”
“We are lucky to have such a supportive community that helps to make this event a resounding success each year,” Superintendent McCoy said. “Bill does an excellent job rallying everyone together and has made this something so many students and staff look forward to every winter. Thank you to everyone who has donated to or participated in this incredible program.”
To learn more about the event or donate to the cause, click here.