The United Mavericks team from the organization Long Island Swimming gave up their indoor swimming pool for the ice-cold waters of North Hempstead Beach Park Saturday.

Following the motto of the day, they were “Freezin’ for a Reason.”

Temperatures around 30 degrees and wind gusts as high as 40 mph didn’t stop them and hundreds of other participants from plunging into Hempstead Harbor to raise funds for the athletes of Special Olympics New York at the 13th annual Town of North Hempstead Polar Bear Plunge.

For Isabela Antoniuk, 14, one of the team’s members, the decision to participate was inspired by her mother, a teacher who works with children with special needs. Isabela’s team paired up with Girl Scouts from Hicksville to take the plunge together.

Her swim team mentee, Isabella Roldan, 9, and Isabella’s sister Jasmine, 12, have participated in the event for past two years.

“I’m kind of nervous but we’re doing this for a good cause – to raise money for the Special Olympics,” said Isabella Roldan.

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In a similar fashion, Julianna Caruso, a native of Mineola, rallied her fellow peers from Hofstra University’s Greek organizations to participate.

Her sorority alone, Delta Phi Epsilon, brought in 30 participants.

“Our main focus is to do philanthropic work and community outreach. We’re passionate about giving back and are always looking for new ways to giving back,” says Caruso.

This year’s plunge raised about $50,000 to assist more than 67,000 children and adults with intellectual disabilities living in New York State who participate in year-round training and competition in more than 20 Olympic-style sports.

Among these athletes was Trent Hampton, 37, who has competed in the National U.S.A. Games in Princeton, N.J.

He completed a triathlon and came in third overall in the male category and second in his division.

“This is the first plunge I’ve seen in person, and to see all of these people here supporting this cause show that they care about athletes like us,” says Hampton. “Because of their support, the organization is able to fund travel and safety gear for us to continue competing.”

Although he was not part of the plunge this year, he might consider doing it next year.

“It was definitely way too cold this year, but weather permitting, I’ll be able to join everyone else next time,” he said.