Jimmy Fallon and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel took the Polar Plunge into Lake Michigan on Sunday morning. Fallon promised the mayor if he appeared on his show in New York City that he would come to Chicago to take the big cold plunge.
Emanuel, who wore a green Chicago Public Library T-shirt and shorts, went first. Jimmy Fallon followed immediately after--clad in his usual suit and tie.
The annual event raises money for Special Olympics in Chicago, and draws thousands of participants every year. Lots of fans carried pictures of Jimmy Fallon on signs--clearly excited that the new Tonight Show host was participating in the event in their city. The Polar Plunge takes place in cities all over the United States where the weather gets below freezing in the winter time.
Special Olympics Chicago President Jen Kramer credits both Jimmy Fallon and Rahm Emanuel for attracting more than 3000 participants for this year's event. That was more than 700 over last years total.
Jimmy Fallon joked during his show on Wednesday that he agreed to make the plunge before realizing what it actually entailed. He also said Emanuel told him he had to "toughen up" before Emanuel would appear on his show. The comedian's followers egged him to do it with a #JimmyPlungeWithUs campaign that took place on Twitter.
— jimmy fallon (@jimmyfallon) March 2, 2014
Jimmy Fallon is such a wonderful sport. It's unlikely that his fans doubted for a minute that he would take place in the Polar Plunge in Chicago. Even if his fans hadn't created the Twitter campaign, Fallon likely would have jumped in that freezing cold water anyway.
It's wonderful that his presence drew even more people to this year's event. That means that much more money was raised for Special Olympics. Children and young adults with a variety of disabilities benefit from the Special Olympics. The funds raise help with training as well as with the actual event.
Image via Instagram