A business owner seeking to support Peninsula College nursing students through a donation to the 30th annual Great Olympic Duck Derby won a car for her efforts.
Angeline Parrish, owner of Banbury Corner Children’s Center of Port Angeles, won a 2019 Toyota Corolla from Wilder Toyota after buying $300 worth of duck tickets for the race on May 19 in Port Angeles’ Lincoln Park, when one of her 60 ducks crossed the finish line first.
It was the first time Parrish has participated in the Duck Derby, in which duck tickets are sold and the numbered ducks are released into the pond at Lincoln Park. The first 40 ducks to cross the finish line win prizes.
The top prize is a car donated by Wilder Toyota of Port Angeles, which has donated a vehicle to the derby every year for 29 years.
“A lot of my employees come from the nursing department” at Peninsula College, Parrish said, and she wanted to do something to help them.
The team that sold her the ducks, Release the Quacken — made up of Peninsula College nursing students – was the top-selling team this year, said Bruce Skinner, executive director of the Olympic Medical Center Foundation.
That team, which was led by Captain Lisa Sutherland, sold 3,945 ducks.
Overall 29,159 ducks yellow rubber ducks were in the race, bringing in an estimated $130,000 for the foundation, the organization that hosts the event and donates funds to Olympic Medical Center in Port Angeles and Sequim.
Parrish wasn’t present. She had traveled out of town for an appointment she said, speaking by cell phone, and several employees texted her about the win.
“I’m so delighted that there’s a way I can help support our town,” she continued. “I care for the children and do it inside a building so it was exciting to donate to the town in a way that takes people outside on a beautiful day.”
The number of ducks sold this year by OMC Foundation groups in Sequim and Port Angeles is the second most in race history, Skinner said, adding that this year the Sequim Rotary Club did not participate.
Four people have sold for all 30 years. In addition to Skinner, they are Gail Ralston, Edie Beck and Dick Kent.
The top seller for 2019 was Bill Littlejohn of Sequim who sold 2,601 ducks.
Ralston took second place with 1,767 ducks; followed by Gay Lynn Iseri with 1,266 ducks; Beck, 1010 ducks; Jim Leskinovitch, 895 ducks; Jean Hordyk, 893 ducks and Leslie English, 843 ducks.
Top individuals selling in Port Angeles were Larry and Sylvia Strohm, who sold 2,352 Ducks.
The Sequim High School Leadership Class sold 789 ducks. The money raised will be used to bring in mental health expert Jeff Yalden for a free presentation at Sequim High School at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Skinner said.
The overall sponsors of the race, attended by about 1,000 people, were the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe and Seven Cedars Casino.