The 32nd annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby is Sunday.
The derby will be presented online as it was last year. Spectators are not allowed at the event at the BMX track in Lincoln Park in Port Angeles, but all can watch it on the Olympic Medical Center Foundation Facebook page at facebook.com/omcfoundation.
The main race is at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, preceded at 1 p.m. by the Bub and Alice Olsen Very Important Duck (VID) Race.
As always, watching the derby — which is presented by the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe — is free.
Proceeds benefit the Olympic Medical Center Foundation — which has given nearly $5 million to, or on behalf of, OMC in the past 10 years — and other charities, including the Port Angeles High School senior parents, the Sequim High School Leadership Class and the Peninsula College nursing program.
Duck tickets continue to be on sale today and Saturday at Swain’s General Store, Saar’s Super Saver Foods, all three Safeway stores in Port Angeles and Sequim, First Federal branches, Sound Community Bank, Lovell’s Roadrunner Shell and other outlets. Each duck ticket costs $6. For $30, duck “adopters” receive an extra duck in the race, providing six chances to win.
As of Thursday, 23,000 duck tickets had been sold, according to Bruce Skinner, executive director of the Olympic Medical Center Foundation. He expects to start the race with between 26,000 and 28,000 ducks and to net about $110,000 from the race.
On Sunday, the derby competitors — numbered yellow rubber ducks — will be dumped into the pond and made to float to a finish line. The holder of the ticket for the first duck that crosses the main race’s finish line wins the grand prize, a 2021 Toyota Corolla donated by Wilder Auto & RV.
The next four will win their ticket-holders, in order of arrival at the finish line, $1,000 in cash from 7 Cedars Casino, up to five nights at the Inn at Otter Crest on the Oregon Coast from Stephen and Marjorie Stetson, a $200 gift card for 7 Cedars Resort Properties and a $200 gift certificate for parts or service and accessories from Wilder.
The other 35 prizes are gift certificates and gift cards for restaurants and other businesses in Port Angeles and Sequim, except for an Amazon gift card.
“The time, effort, labor and equipment that various groups put into the Duck Derby to make this event successful year after year shows how each of us contributes to make this area such a great place to live,” event co-chair Bob Lovell said in a press release.
“So many individuals and organizations are tireless with their donations and work in this community to help make it what it is.”
Added co-chair Rick Smith: “It’s not really about expecting to win, it’s just knowing that you’re donating to a worthy cause that matters. Winning is secondary.”
The VID Race is an opportunity for businesses and individuals, including those from outside the North Olympic Peninsula who do business with local companies, to purchase ducks emblazoned with their logo, for $300 each.
Prizes in the VID race will be $600 for first place, $300 for second place and $150 for third.
The duck derby is operated under the rules of the Washington State Gambling Commission. Since arrangements with the state had to be made more than a month ago, organizers did not know at the time if the county’s status in the state’s COVID-19 recovery plan would change before the race, Skinner said. So they erred on the side of caution and made the event virtual.
“We could have done it in person based on the guidelines today, but we weren’t sure if it would be rolled back,” Skinner said Thursday.
For more information, see omhf.org or phone the OMC Foundation at 360-417-7144.