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Athlete Spotlight: Super Plungers

Athlete Jack Kain with YPC member Marlo at the Polar Plunge 5K/10K finish line holding a white sign that reads "5k/10K run & plunge"
Ashley Herberholz – Multnomah County  

My name is Ashley Herberholz, and I am 35 years old. I have been participating in Special Olympics Oregon for 28 years. I am an athlete in Multnomah County, and I participate in sports such as snowboarding and track and field. My proudest accomplishment in Special Olympics Oregon is competing in snowboarding, Super Plunging for the past three years and becoming an Athlete Leader and member of our Athlete Input Council.  When I am not participating in Special Olympics Oregon my hobbies are spending time with my family. One thing I want everyone to know about me is compassionate kind-hearted cares for others. For me, being an Athlete Leader means, I get to share my input. My personal goal in Special Olympics Oregon is to become a voice for my teammates and fellow athletes.  

Why is Special Olympics Oregon Important to you?  

“Special Olympics Oregon has given me great self-esteem while making friends and overcoming challenges I never thought I could overcome, such as learning to Snowboard.  Thanks to Special Olympics Oregon, I feel I am a true athlete” 

Why are you participating in the Super Plunge? 

“I want to support an organization that is dear to my heart. I am an athlete, so this is my way of giving back.   This will be my fourth year participating in the Super Plunge and I want to raise money so me and my friends can continue doing what we love in Special Olympics Oregon.” 

What are you most looking forward to when Super Plunging? 

I am nervous as it will be virtual and I have struggled to raise money this year, but I am excited to still be a part of the team.  The Super Plungers are like a community and we are all friends”.  

If you could share a message to anyone reading this, what would it be? 

“Donate to my page PLEASE or any of the Super Plungers.  The money is going to such a great cause and we need your support this year more than ever 


Chris Dyer

Hi my name is Chris Dyer and I have been a Special Olympics Athlete for 4 years.  I participate in bocce and bowling and recently participated virtually in Athletes and Fitness as a Sport for SOOR’s Fall Virtual Games.  My favorite thing about Special Olympics Oregon is meeting new friends and doing fun sports!  Some of my hobbies include playing video games, watching movies and hanging out with my chickens.     

Why are you participating in the Super Plunge? 

For the fun experience and to try it for the first time.  I’ve never done it and all my friends have.  I thought it would be fun to try out.  I wanted to get the experience of it. 

What are you most looking forward to when Super Plunging? 

 I’m excited to put my feet in a cold bucket of water.  I’m nervous about waking up so many times and putting my feet in the ice-cold bucket every hour!  But I’m doing it for the fun of it and to help Special Olympics out.    

He’s hoping to have a Seahawks themed outfit for one of the plunges. Big time Seahawks fan! 

If you could share a message to anyone reading this, what would it be? 

Please join us for the 2021 Polar Plunge – I promise you’ll have fun doing it!  If you don’t want to Plunge, you can help by donating so that us Special Olympics Athletes can keep on playing sports! 


Jack Kain – Multnomah County 

My name is Jack Kain and I am twenty five years old. I have been a Special Olympics Athlete for twelve years. I participate in Soccer, Basketball, Softball and Track and Field. I played on my High School Project Unified team and on the Portland State Unified Team. I am most proud to have competed at the State Games at Oregon State. That was really fun! I ran my first 5K this year at the Virtual Games. I am signed up for the Winter Virtual 5K too. Some of my other hobbies are walking on the beach, working out, cooking, training service dogs, singing and acting.  

Why is Special Olympics Important to you?   

I like participating in Special Olympics because it is fun. I get to compete with my friends, make new friends and go to fun places. It is also a good way to stay in shape. This year has been hard not being able to see my friends and compete in person but SOOR has found fun ways to stay connected. We have had virtual dance parties, played bingo, and virtual games. My team also keeps in touch with zoom calls, Facebook and our group text messaging. 

Why are you participating in the Super Plunge? 

The Super Plunge is a fundraiser and it raises a lot of money for Special Olympics. It is a lot of fun hanging in the tent all night with the other plungers. I am going to miss that part. I’m probably not going to miss staying up all night and those middle of the night plunges into the icy Columbia River though. 

What are you most looking forward to when Super Plunging? 

This year will be different because it is virtual. I will only be plunging with my dad. But we are thinking of new fun ways to plunge and posting the videos on our plunge pages. I have a few ideas that my dad may not think are all that fun!!!! 

If you could share a message to anyone reading this, what would it be?  

Thank you. Thank you for donating to Special Olympics. Your continued support provides fun ways for athletes to compete in sports, make friends and stay active. And donate. Please donate. Also, if you want a fun this to be part of, volunteer. SOOR has lots of fun ways you can volunteer.