New year's plunge for charity

By Beau Ebenezer

January 1, 2014 Updated Jan 2, 2014 at 11:24 AM CDT

EAST PEORIA, Ill. -- New Year's Day was the first day Stephen and Allyson Pragovich could call each other husband and wife.

The couple got married on New Year's Eve, but there was still one more aisle they had to walk down.

"This is our first time ever," said Stephen Pragovich. "I've never gone in cold water or have done the Polar Plunge. We figured if we were going to take the plunge yesterday, we would take the plunge today."

The 12th Annual Polar Ice Plunge brought out 300 jumpers.

Each taking their own dive into the frigid Illinois River.

It felt like 10 degrees at the East Peoria Boat Club docks Wednesday as many braved the cold to help out several charities in Central Illinois.

One group of high school girls made it their mission to help out the organizations that benefit from the dive no matter how cold it was.

"We always dress up the same, and we thought we should be super heroes this year," said super plunger, Emily Dawson. "It makes it a lot better to know we are doing it for a good cause rather than to just freeze."

Organizers said thanks to the continued support they were able to get a record number of 42 sponsors, which will continue to make the annual event a special day to remember.

"This is great," said Pragovich. "We will remember this forever."