The 22nd Annual MSP/NRP Deep Creek Dunk is scheduled for February 22, 2020. Dunkers will take a daring dip into the frozen Deep Creek Lake to benefit the 8,033 athletes of Special Olympics Maryland. All across the state, all year long, SOMD athletes are training and competing in one of our 27 different sports, reaping the benefits of the programs both on and off the playing fields.

The dunk will take place on the beach behind Uno’s Chicago Grill & Bar on the shores of Deep Creek Lake. The second part of the Special Olympics Maryland (SOMD) winter water series, the Deep Creek Dunk has become a winter-time tradition for hundreds of warm-hearted Dunkers.

Dunk participants take a chilly dip in Deep Creek Lake to raise funds for Special Olympics Maryland, which provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports events for children and adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities.

A shared operation hosted by the Maryland State Police (MSP) and Natural Resource Police (NRP), to benefit Special Olympics Maryland (SOMD) over the past twenty years this event has seen over 10,000 Dunkers raise over $2 million for Special Olympics Maryland.

By participating in the 2020 Deep Creek Dunk, you are helping to provide year-round sports and leadership programs for the athletes of Special Olympics Maryland. Your donation will support the sports and leadership programs offered throughout the state. Special Olympics Maryland programs are FREE to athletes and families thanks to generous community supporters who believe in the Special Olympics mission: to give our athletes opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendships with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.

The money raised at the Dunk goes to cover the entire yearly program cost of the Special Olympics Maryland Garrett County Program. This includes training facilities, equipment, competition, travel and uniform costs. It also goes towards some expenses related to the Interscholastic Unified Sports programs at Northern and Southern High School.

The remaining money raised goes to support the cost of state wide trainings and competitions such as the Winter Games where Garrett County athletes compete in Alpine Skiing and Snowshoe.

For a minimum of $75 in pledges, dunk participants take a quick dip in the lake and earn some great prizes. The event is free to spectators while dunkers will receive a commemorative sweatshirt and the great feeling of freezing your “fur” off for a worthwhile cause. There are two options for fund-raising. You can pay the minimum $75 donation to dunk and receive your 2020 dunk Sweatshirt, or you can Fundraise to dunk. Registration for this is free but you must raise a minimum of $75 to receive a sweatshirt and compete for prizes.

Pre-registration is available now by calling 410-242-1515, ext. 141 or you can register online at On site Registration begins at 10 AM.

Special prizes will also be awarded to the dunker raising the most money, sworn law enforcement officer raising the most money and for the one in the best costume. There is also a prize for the top fundraising team.

Warming tents will be provided for people to change before and after the Dunk. There is no required Dunk depth…go in a little, or go in all the way. Ankles count. No diving is allowed. Dunkers will go in groups of 30 – 40 or so to allow all participants to have their spotlighted moment in the lake. There is no charge for spectators. Come out and help create a world where opportunity is not limited by disability in our community.

For even more fun, join other dunkers for an evening of fire and wine and the annual Goosebumps, Grapes, and Growlers event presented by the Honi-Honi Bar, UNO and Arrowhead Market. This fun event will be held on the deck at the Honi-Honi Bar Friday night at 6:00 PM. Get toasty around a roaring bonfire and by sampling a variety of wonderful wines courtesy of Arrowhead Market and beer presented by Flying Dog Brewery and the Honi-Honi inside their heated tent. Admission is a $20 Donation to Special Olympics Maryland. There will be live entertainment and plenty of fun. All door proceeds will benefit Special Olympics Maryland as well. Dunkers will be able to pick up their wristbands and sweatshirts to avoid the lines at registration on Dunk day.

In addition to the website at you can get Dunk updates from a variety of social media sources including Facebook as a Fan of “Deep Creek Dunk.

(All photos courtesy of Marleen Van den Neste, DK Photographics & Elaine Fisher.)