Miners take polar dip to help a good cause

A fundraising challenge at Copper Mountain Mine led to two employees braving the frozen Similkameen River - TWICE

Patrik Gillerstedt and Ward Phillips braved the frozen Similkameen River twice on Saturday

Working in the mining industry is not without inherent risks.

Those risks generally don’t include hypothermia, however.

Saturday afternoon on the tail end of one of the coldest weeks in Princeton’s history two employees of Copper Mountain Mine took a polar dip in the Similkameen River for a very good cause.

“It wasn’t so bad,” called out Ward Phillips, after plunging into the freezing water for 30 seconds, alongside Patrik Gillerstedt.

The two men warmed up for the challenge in a portable sauna, while a hole was cut in the river’s ice and ladders dropped into the water.

After an initial dive, and retreating to the warmth of the sauna-hut, the pair took a second swim and emerged from the river with their bodies steaming and in some cases ice-covered.

The challenge raised $7,793 for the Princeton Crisis Assistance Center, said human resources manager Kim Vokey.

“This is our first year for the polar dip, our second challenge fundraiser and our fourth supporting the crisis center,” said Vokey. “Last year three employees challenged each other and dyed their hair in Christmas colors. We decided to do a different challenge this year.”

In four years mine employees have donated $35,000 to crisis assistance.

For the polar dip event, both participants canvassed to raise funds, and $1,500 was donated by Eriez Manufacturing.

“We had two buckets,” said Vokey, “one labeled Patrik and one for Ward. Donors put money into the buckets of the person they wanted to see go in the water. The guys were about even so they both went in.”

A first-aider was on hand Saturday “in case either of our guys got into trouble.”

 

Just Posted

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Showers to start weekend, sun returning soon

Environment Canada forecasts rain on Saturday and the heat returning next week

RDOS contributes funds to arts centre workshop

South Okanagan Performing Arts Centre Society wants input into proposed facility

Summerland Fall Fair to include zucchini race

Event is in honour of bobsleigh athlete Justin Kripps

Shake your heads crazy people, this isn’t television drama

Lock ‘em up and throw away the key. It’s got to be… Continue reading

First Nations man deals with charges of illegal hunting

An administrative error may have resulted in a man suffering from Stage… Continue reading

July showers wash out half of the Okanagan’s cherry crop

Cherry growers say this is the worst season they’ve seen in decades

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

COLUMN: Looking back to a time of optimism

The first lunar landing 50 years ago was a time to celebrate dreams and accomplishments

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Okanagan e-scooter company foils robberies

OGO Scooters staff helped return stolen property three times in 1st week of operations in Kelowna

Olympian brings women empowerment in sports to the Okanagan

Two-time medalist Natalie Spooner joined the Girls Rock the Rink event in Kelowna

Okanagan school district monitoring McCurdy supportive housing plan debate

Top priority for board of education is to maintain safety integrity of local schools

Most Read