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Special Olympics

About 6,000 jump into the Chesapeake for the annual Polar Bear Plunge

About 6,000 jump into the Chesapeake for the annual Polar Bear Plunge

After working 10 Polar Bear Plunge events, George Hauf knows how to keep warm.

Unlike the "plungers" who run past mounds of snow — with exposed skin — and splash into the chilly waters of the Chesapeake, the Baltimore police lieutenant assigned to the city's dive team can layer up in polar fleece and long underwear underneath his police-issued waterproof dry fit suit.

Hauf was among the several dozen officers who stood watch in waist-deep water, keeping an eye on participants and making sure they didn't stray too far or stay under too long. Behind him were six law enforcement boats and a clear view of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

"It's pretty...

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