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The REAL Jersey Shore – 5976 Plungers, 30,000 Onlookers, And An Estimated $1.5M Raised In One Day! [Recap]

Big Joe Henry enjoying a special moment with a friend at Saturday's Polar Bear Plunge in Seaside Heights
Big Joe Henry enjoying a special moment with a friend at Saturday's Polar Bear Plunge in Seaside Heights

Yesterday we were a few blocks from where they film the infamous MTV show The Jersey Shore, which many say portrays the area of Seaside Heights in a negative light. However, there’s another side to our Jersey Shore. It’s a much more positive side… Where 30,000 can gather and support 5,796 people willing to brave the cold waters of the Atlantic ocean in the middle of winter, raising BIG money for Special Olympics of NJ.

It was an amazing day at the 19th Annual Polar Bear Plunge. Big Joe and NJ101.5 were so proud to be a part of another monumental year. Here’s a Recap of the day’s interviews, a fan-submitted photo album from a professional photographer, and a video interview of Big Joe Henry with NJ Discover.

Big Joe Henry Interviews Marc Edenzon
Big Joe Henry Interviews Marc Edenzon

Big Joe talks with Marc Edenzon President of Special Olympics of New Jersey. Special Olympics of NJ gives .85 of every dollar raised back to the programs and 23,000 athletes of SONJ.

Keith Dunn Presents A Check for $25,000
Keith Dunn Presents A Check for $25,000

Keith Dunn Executive vice president from the New Jersey State PBA stopped by to talk with Big Joe Henry and dropped off a check for 25,000 from the PBA and it’s 30,000 plus members. Thanks so much!

Here’s a album of pictures sent in by Marianne Nicoletti a fan of the station and professional photographer. Great pictures Marianne, thank you!

Bobby Belfiore stopped by but unfortunately all our cameras were on the beach taking pictures of the madness and we didn’t get a pic. Bobby oversees the Port Authority’s police command at Newark Liberty International Airport, and helped found the New Jersey Law Enforcement Torch Run Committee for Special Olympics 20 years ago. Belfiore plunged for the 19th straight year into the 42 degree waters of the Atlantic to raise money for SONJ.  His Law Enforcement Torch Run has donated close to 2,000,000 over the years to the Polar Bear Plunge for Special Olympics. Great job Bobby and thank you!

Kevin Burke Gives Big Joe The Totals At The End Of The Day
Kevin Burke Gives Big Joe The Totals At The End Of The Day

Polar Bear Plunge Event Chairman Kevin Burke goes over the numbers with Big Joe. The Totals: An amazing 5,976 Plungers raised over 1,500,000 in donations to Special Olympics of NJ. Congratulations to Kevin and his 200 plus volunteers who worked so hard in organizing this tremendous & successful event. A proud day for all involved.


Last but not least here’s video of a great interview of Big Joe Henry from NJ Discover.

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