News from the DNR Office of Communications

DNR Employees To Participate In Polar Bear Plunge

Annapolis, MD (January 28, 2010) — Many brave souls from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will join thousands of participants and cold water enthusiasts Saturday January 30 as they plunge into the icy Chesapeake Bay to benefit a good cause.

The annual Polar Bear Plunge, held at Sandy Point State Park and sponsored by the Maryland State Police, raises funds for Special Olympics Maryland, the State’s largest year-round organization devoted to sports training and competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

“DNR employees have always been known for going above and beyond,” said DNR Secretary John Griffin. “Marylanders are fortunate to have such caring individuals working on their behalf. I salute their commitment and their bravery.”

Several units within the Department, including the Chesapeake & Coastal Program and the Natural Resources Police, are plunging as teams and have already raised thousands of dollars.

Matt Fleming, the Chesapeake & Coastal Program Division Director feels this event not only supports a good cause, but is a great team building opportunity for his staff.

“Originally, this started out as sort of a dare, but as we have raised more than $3,000 for the Maryland Special Olympics, this is something we are all quite proud of,” said Fleming. “Maryland is such a unique place to live, work and play. In an attempt to live out our mission and take advantage of one of the Maryland coast's unique opportunities for play, we are excited to participate in the 2010 Polar Bear Plunge!”

This year’s event is sure to be a memorable one for participants and spectators alike. The forecast for Saturday is calling for a 60 percent chance of snow and a high of 29 degrees.

   January 28, 2010

Contact: Josh Davidsburg
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2009, is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 467,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries, and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic, and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at