Learning from our Derby Duck Racers – Palmdale, CA

Game Events Derby Duck Race, Fundraising, Fundraising Community

In September, we had the opportunity to visit our Derby Duck racer in Palmdale, California to observe how the duck race works in their community.  Here are some things we learned from the Kiwanis Club of Palmdale while attending the 10th Annual Antelope Valley Rubber Duck Race.


  • The Kiwanis Club has a great group of enthusiastic club members who share a passion for service and are motivated about improving the community and making a difference in a child’s life. We could see why Kiwanis is the type of service club that people want to join because the members have fun and support each other at club meetings, events, and service projects.  To ensure that everything ran smoothly for the duck race, each Kiwanis Club member was assigned to a team so that on duck race day each member knew where they had to be and what their responsibilities were.

  • High school students play a large role in the preparations for duck race day. It was great to see so many high school students sporting their bright yellow duck t-shirts at the tagging party. Students are also responsible for launching of the ducks in the lazy river and retrieval of the ducks after the race.  With so many high school students helping out, the process of getting the ducks in and out of the water went quickly.
  • Many duck adoptions come from schools who form teams. Duck adoption papers are handed out to principals and teachers who then distribute the papers to their students.  Prizes are awarded to the schools who sell the most ducks.    One unique thing that the Kiwanis Club does with their adoption papers is that one of their main sponsors has a coupon in their papers for a buy one get one free meal.  The sponsor receives great foot traffic from this coupon all year round.
  • The entire community is invited to come watch the festivities on race day at the water park. There were families lined up outside the water park 30 minutes before the event started! For a $5.00 entrance fee, families and their children were able to have full use of the water park including water slides, the lazy river and fountains.


  • Besides the duck race, the Kiwanis Club has many other activities on race day including a motorized boat duck race, a corporate duckorating contest, and a corporate duck race where all of the corporate decorated ducks are put in the water after the contest. It was fun for the community to view and vote for the best decorated duck. Used point of purchase displays were modified so that they could be set up as voting canisters for the best decorated duck.   A large duck merchandise table was set up right next to the duck adoption table so people could buy various duck merchandise.  Young children had fun getting pictures with Quacky who was strolling around the park and also getting pictures with the duck balloon.

Even though the weather turned cool the evening of the duck race, the event was enjoyed by all and the Kiwanis Club sold over 6,000 ducks, raising funds to support the South Antelope Valley Education Foundation and other youth programs in the community.  To learn more about the Kiwanis Club of Palmdale West, visit their Facebook page.