GOING GAGA AT POLAR PLUNGE
Lady Gaga had an important question for her fiance, Taylor Kinney, a star of NBC’s “Chicago Fire,” before taking part in the Polar Plunge on Sunday at North Avenue Beach.
“Can I get your Blackhawks hat wet? Or am I going to get in trouble?”
Kinney signed off on the request.
Al Roker, who also plunged, explained why he would not be wearing a Speedo bathing suit.
“It’s actually a federal mandate. I’m not allowed to wear a Speedo,” the NBC weatherman said during a pre- plunge chitchat with reporters.
“I feel like everyone’s stalling right now,” said Gaga.
The water temperature was 36 degrees.
Gaga held her nose as she hitched a piggyback ride on Kinney, who collapsed into the frigid water— a deja vu moment of their 2015 plunge.
Kinney broke down their style: “a piggyback flop, dunkeroo with a Hermann sumoplex at the end.”
His fellow cast members, along with actors from “Chicago PD,” jumped in, too— frolicking and splashing for a minute before running breathless for dry land.
“I’m so proud of all the kids who are here,” said a dripping- wet Gaga. “This is so awesome and inspiring. This is no big deal. We’re just happy to be there for them,” she said of the event— which raises money for Special Olympics— as she slapped high fives to volunteers handing out towels.
Quinton Aaron, the actor who played NFL lineman Michael Oher in the film “Blindside,” also plunged and posed for selfies before drying off. Celebrity chef Graham Elliot got wet too.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel offered a round of fist bumps to emergency personnel on hand before the event, which hosted nearly 6,000 plungers, kicked off at 10 a. m.
Emanuel helped boost the plunge popularity by challenging “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon to plunge two years ago. Fallon accepted. Fundraising, attendance and media coverage have grown each year since. Last year actor Vince Vaughn plunged wearing a Blackhawks jersey.
As of Sunday, the event had raised about $ 1.3 million— beating last year’s record of $ 1 million.
Nine members of the City Council plunged, including Matt O’Shea ( 19th) and Howard Brookins ( 21st). The Loyola Academy state champion football team plunged with their trophy.
And hundreds of costumed plungers showed up, including a man dressed as the pope, two guys in tuxedoes and four people dressed as various fruit.
Kayleigh Blosser, 29, of Lake View, recruited three friends to dress as pieces of pizza.
“We’re cold pizza,” said Blosser, whose post- plunge game plan called for a whiskey on the rocks.
“Or a sauna,” said another piece of pizza.
“Pizza is the best; everyone should be pizza,” Blosser said.
“I’M SO PROUD OF ALL THE KIDS WHO ARE HERE, THIS IS SO AWESOME AND INSPIRING. THIS IS NO BIG DEAL. WE’RE JUST HAPPY TO BE THERE FOR THEM.”
— Lady Gaga at the Polar Plunge, which as of Sunday had raised $ 1.3M for the Special Olympics
Lady Gaga and her fiancé Taylor Kinney dry off after jumping into the frigid waters of Lake Michigan during the 16th Annual Chicago Polar Plunge at North Avenue Beach, Sunday.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel greets Chicago Fire Department personnel before the plunge.