20th Annual “A Wish Come True” Polar Plunge is on for January 1st at Easton’s Beach!

The first day of 2024 will be special for many reasons. For numerous groups and individuals, they will head to the ocean for a great cause while helping two local kids who are battling life-threatening illnesses.

A Wish Come True, the oldest wish-granting organization in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, will host its annual Polar Plunge at Easton’s Beach (AKA First Beach) in Newport on Monday, January 1st, from 11:00 AM till 1:30 PM. Arrive early, as parking will be limited.

This year’s “Wish Kids” are Sophia (from Warwick, age 6) and Gracela (from West Kingstown, RI, age 16). Both wish to travel to Florida to visit Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld!

Sofia of Warwick, RI, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia back in July of 2022. She is on an aggressive chemo cycle every three weeks to help her fight off the cancer.   

Sofia loves arts and crafts – especially drawing and painting. She also loves to shop at Target and play with her dog and bunny! Sofia is excited to spend quality time with her family and make memories in Disney and SeaWorld!

Graciela of West Kingston, RI, was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. She was a micro-premie and twin survivor, being born at 23 weeks old and weighing 1.2 pounds. She spent the first five months of her life in the NICU. Graciela has had 11 surgeries and countless procedures, including a stem cell transplant at 2 ½ years old.   

Graciela is a strong and happy teen who loves to learn and have fun. Graciela loves thrill rides and is excited to ride the Tower of Terror in Disney.

AWCT Executive Director Mary-Kate O’Leary said, “Often, people don’t realize they are donating to help make dreams come true for children with a life-threatening illness. This event features more than 5,000 people willing to head into the water and be ‘freezin’ for a reason’. This past year, we granted 43 wishes, the highest in the history of AWCT. We did not anticipate the great need but are happy that we could grant these wishes thanks to the incredible support of the community.  

“We are especially grateful to the people who made this event so successful for two decades,” said O’Leary, who will be one of the plungers. “The money we raise from this event goes toward helping children and their families find an opportunity for joy as well as helping the family get back on their feet during this long and challenging journey.”

There are several ways the public can help, according to O’Leary. Sponsors can help financially starting at $100 with a “Freezin’ for a Reason” level with other sponsors for $250 (Polar) $500 (Bronze) $1,000 (Silver) $2,500 (Gold)  and $5,000 (Presenting) with accompanying benefits at each level. Most importantly we want people to attend and have a great time. Plungers will be encouraged to give $25 to take the big plunge. In addition, there will be t-shirts, towels and blankets for sale. 

This year, we challenge companies to form teams to get their employees involved. Individuals may also form teams. Any team that raises at least $1,000 will be entered to win a $1,500 prize!

To Form a Team:


A Wish Come True also encourages anyone who would like to contribute to their mission can sign up for a recurring gift program. Anyone who does—regardless of the contribution—will be involved in a drawing to win $500.

In addition, A Wish Come True is actively seeking sponsors. Anyone interested in getting their name or business out to thousands of participants and onlookers can look into the various levels that begin with Polar Sponsor $250 (that includes recognition on a T-shirt and provides a family to be transported by limousine) to a Presenting Sponsor $5,000 (that covers basic family needs, and includes event signage, website notice, and mentions in social and mainstream media).

Register here to participate:


For those who are unable to attend but like to help, they can either click or visit this link:


About A Wish Come True.

A Wish Come True, Inc. is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization founded on October 8, 1982. Their mission is to provide wishes and resources to families with a child (ages 3-18), suffering with a life-threatening illness that live throughout Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts.

For more details about the event and/or the organization, please visit their website at www.awish.org. Or, feel free to contact Mary-Kate O’Leary either by phone at 401-781-9199, directly at 401-644-2237 or email at: marykate@awishcometrue.org




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