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Adoptions get quacking for duck race fundraiser

American River competition to benefit PARC and Auburn Chamber of Commerce
By: Kylea Scott Journal correspondent
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Allow your newly adopted duck to experience the thrill of floating, bobbing and spinning down the American River, encourages Bill Radakovitz, a past president of the Auburn Chamber of Commerce. Radakovitz is helping plan a new type of fundraiser in Auburn: a duck race down the American River. According to Radakovitz, organizers are anticipating the adoption of 2,000 rubber ducks, which will flock together at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug 25, to race the quarter-mile stretch of river between the Old Foresthill Bridge and the New Foresthill Bridge, Radakovitz said. The ducks each come with an adoption certificate, and can be adopted for a donation of $10 each, three for $20, 10 for $50, or 25 for $100, according to Radakovitz. Each duck will have a number corresponding with the adoption certificate, to ensure easy identification of the winner, he said. ?All of the ducks are yellow, and some have little hats. Everybody gets to name their own duck,? Radakovitz said. All proceeds will benefit the Auburn Chamber of Commerce and Protect American River Canyons, or PARC, with the exception of 50 percent that will go to the non-profit organization that sells the duck, Radakovitz said. The money that the Chamber of Commerce receives will go toward funding community events, and the money to PARC will help to clean and preserve the American River, he added. Radakovitz said the chamber is looking for more non-profit organizations to help sell the adoption of ducks. According to Radakovitz, non-profits are encouraged to participate because it is a fun, easy way to earn money. ?We want the ducks to be adopted as soon as possible to ensure the success of the event,? Radakovitz said. Event festivities will include vendors, food, T-shirts, hats, live music and a free shuttle service from the river to parking areas, he said. According to Radakovitz, the race should take about 20-30 minutes. To ensure fairness to all participants, the ducks will be released into the river by city officials, and someone will be positioned at the v-shaped finish line to collect the winners, Radakovitz said. A few volunteers will also walk along side the ducks to make sure they don?t get stuck in eddies or other obstacles, he added. First-place winner will receive $1,000 cash, and those close behind will receive other various prizes, including a white water rafting excursion, Radakovitz said. ?If the event is a success, we will recycle the ducks and do it again next year,? he said. Bruce Cosgrove, CEO of the Auburn Chamber of Commerce, said he is looking forward to being part of something unique and different in the community. ?This fun, zany, and entertaining duck race on the American River is going to unite several non-profit organizations. It captures the imagination of the young and old,? Cosgrove said. For more information, call Bill Radakovitz at (530) 823-9764, or the Auburn Chamber of Commerce at (530) 885-5616 ext 220.