Plunging for Pink has another successful year raising money for breast cancer

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(ABC 6 News) – Over 130 brave souls jumped into a frozen lake Saturday for a good cause, part of Paint the Town Pink.

Plunging for Pink took place at Austin’s East Side Lake.

"That’s why I jumped. To raise money," Zach Ahrens said. Ahrens plunged for his mom and is a part of Team Dutchtown Jumpers.

The first year of Plunging for Pink had about 30-40 jumpers and it was a very small event. It’s grown every year since. This year is the 10th year and it’s the biggest event for Paint the Town Pink.

"It’s great to see you know this year with COVID and everything else for challenges we were unsure of what we would see coming out but we have about the best weather we could possibly imagine here at about 20 degrees. We have a good turnout here," Toren Bires, organizer of Plunging for Pink, said.

Just under half a million dollars have been raised in the first nine years of the event. So organizers expect to be closer to $600,000 after this year.

"It’s just amazing the support that we get from the community. We actually have around $20,000 that came in just from donations from local businesses before this event even started. So, before the first person even jumps in the water, we’re already at over $20,000 raised," Bires said.

Everyone has been touched by cancer in some way. Bires said this is a fun way to have an event that helps raise money toward hopefully finding a cure for cancer.

But some who did the plunge have been closely touched by cancer recently.

"Last year my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and it is a rare form of cancer so I have a special place in my heart for The Hormel Institute," Zach Ahrens said. "It just makes me melt."

Just with Zach’s group alone, Dutchtown Jumpers, they’ve raised $228,000 over eight years.

"Anything we can do to raise money for cancer research and The Hormel Institute is what we’re here to do," Mitchell Meyer on Team Muffler Center, said.

"We’re raising millions of dollars here and it just makes me tear up a little bit. It’s awesome," Ahrens added.

If you missed out on Plunging for Pink, you can still donate to Paint the Town Pink or attend any o the remaining events throughout February. There is also an online auction going on through Thursday.