The Goodyear Lake Polar Bear Jump will have to wait until 2021 to celebrate its 25th year, as organizers have announced the 2020 jump will be canceled because of a car accident that affected the jump's founders.
"It was hard for us to make the decision, but we are not physically able to do the jump this year," co-organizer Brenda Waters told The Daily Star on Tuesday, Dec. 3.
"It is just a jumble of feelings," she continued. "This would have been our 25th year, and we were ready to go, so it is very disappointing to me."
Waters said she and her husband, Jamie, were in a car accident in November, and have been recovering from their injuries, which were serious.
"Luckily we were in a truck, but the truck was totaled," she said.
The family has already set a date for the 2021 jump, which is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021.
According to The Daily Star archives, Brenda and Jamie started the jump in 1996, after making a trip to a similar event in the St. Lawrence Seaway. Since then, they have raised more than $1 million for local children in need of assistance with medical expenses. The couple live in Milford, and recipients come from a 45-mile radius around the Otsego County town.
Last year, the jump had about 200 participants and raised a record amount, about $130,000. All of the money goes to the recipients and their families, according to media reports, and the checks are issued the weekend of the jump, at a post-event banquet.
Waters said they will attempt to make some small donations to local families in need, anyway, and donors are still encouraged to help. There will be a T-shirt design contest in January and a contest partnership with 5 Star Subaru in Oneonta will also take place. Go to pbjump.com for more information.