Our ducks are ready for another busy race weekend taking on 3 cities between Saturday and Sunday! Collectively, 75,000 ducks will race to raise funds for at-risk youth, bereaved families, and various nonprofits in their community. The first lucky ducks who cross the finish line could win groceries for a year, cash, and more!
1. Reedy River Duck Derby
Ducks Racing: 10,000
Organization: Rotary Club of the Reedy River Greenville
Where: Greenville, SC
Who They Serve: Various local non-profits
2. YESS Duck Derby
Ducks Racing: 30,000
Organization: Youth Emergency Services & Shelter
Where: Des Moines, IA
Who They Serve: At-risk youth who need a safe haven and network of services such as shelter, food, counseling services, etc.
Our ducks are making quite the splash this weekend with nearly 80,000 ducks hitting the water in 5 cities. From California to Virginia, check out below to see where our ducks are making their appearance and the quacktastic causes they’re racing for!
1. The Graham Duck Derby
Ducks Racing: 10,000
Organization: Rotary Club of Graham
Where: Graham, TX
Who They Serve: All proceeds will benefit local causes such as Backpack Buddies, college scholarships, Teacher Appreciation Breakfast and more.
2. Ken-Ducky Derby
Ducks Racing: 46,000
Organization: Harbor House of Louisville
Where: Louisville, KY
Who They Serve: Individuals with developmental disabilities by providing training and development programs for them and their families.
4. Pulaski Duck Race
Ducks Racing: 5,000
Organization: YMCA of Pulaski County
Where: Pulaski, VA
Who They Serve: Offer various fitness related activities and child development center to help people grow spiritually, mentally and physically.
One of the most important components of planning a Derby Duck Race is sponsorships. Sponsors are the key to success for your duck race. So, how do you get sponsors for this quacky event? Here are some tips to consider when you are seeking sponsors for your Derby Duck Race and other fundraising efforts.
Allow Plenty of Time
We cannot emphasize enough that it takes time to secure sponsorships. We recommend allowing your organization 7-9 months to plan a Duck Race because the majority of this time is going to be spent securing sponsorships. Don’t wait until the last minute. The more time you put into it, the better it will be for your race. When planning your duck race focus on your sponsors first. As a first-year racer, GAME sends you a timeline to follow so that you can stay on track.
Form a Committee
Designate a few people to be a part of a duck race sponsorship committee. Their sole focus will be partnering with new sponsors in your community as well as maintaining current relationships. Oftentimes one person tries to “wear every hat” and do everything from securing sponsors to logistics to Adopting Ducks which leads to exhaustion. If you need to be involved in the sponsorships, make sure you have other people assisting in the other areas of your duck race so you can keep focused. Also, have multiple people in your sponsorship committee. This will lighten the load and bring fresh ideas and new perspectives when approaching new and current sponsorships.
Create a Prospect List
Think of all the businesses in your community who may have been involved with your nonprofit in the past as well as those businesses that you would like to partner with. Create a list. Even if a business has said no in the past, make sure to include them on your list. You never know, they might surprise you and want to be involved with a duck race since it is something different. Look for businesses that attract a lot of families (i.e. grocery stores or restaurants) and businesses that are related to your organization and cause. Also, pay attention to advertising in your community. If businesses are spending money on bus signs, billboards, street banners, etc. they might have some money to donate as a sponsorship too!
Before sending out any emails, letters, or duck feathers to your prospect list, ask your board members, staff, and volunteers if they know any owners or employees at one of these businesses. If they do, ask for a warm introduction by phone, email, or in person. Potential sponsors are more likely to open your letter or email if they have met you before through a mutual contact. Always remember, do not ask for money or present sponsorship levels in your first letter to them. Instead, let them know about your duck race and organization and tell them to save the date. Be sure to include that you will follow up with them with more information in the near future date.
Find a Media Sponsor First
Media sponsors are great to secure first. In addition, they can attract other sponsors since they will know your Duck Race will be receiving coverage. You can also include media mentions in your proposals as a sponsorship value. Some media may help you sell sponsorships and/or provide warm introductions as they already have a lot of connections in the community. If available, media can also help assist in the production of a duck race promotional video that you can show other potential sponsor prospects.
Remember to check our blog regularly for more tips on other fun elements for a Derby Duck Race!
In honor of the Houston Duck Derby returning April 12th, check out this QUACK-tastic highlight video from last year’s race! All proceeds go back to students at Grace Christian Academy. If you’re in the Houston area, help them sell out again for the 2nd year and adopt your duck today!
Adopt A Duck. Inspire A Future
This week, over 20,000 ducks will race for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana for the 29th Annual Running of the Ducks! All duck adoptions benefit the numerous programs offered by the club. Each club in the Acadiana area provides age focused programs ranging from 6 to 16 yrs. The goal is to provide “programs designed to empower youth to excel in school, become good citizens and lead healthy, productive lives.”
Such programs include:
- Sports & Recreation
- Health & Wellness
- Career Development
- Character & Leadership
The first lucky duck to cross the finish line will win the grand prize of a 2019 Nissan Altima along with other great prizes!
The Great Brevard Duck Race is celebrating its 21st year on March 30th! For 21 years, the duck race has been a staple fundraiser for Crosswinds Youth Services, who serve vulnerable youth and their families in Brevard County. This year 12,000 ducks will race down the Indian River to win some fantastic prizes such as a 2019 Honda Fit and a 4-Night Bahamian Cruise!
Go to Great Brevard Duck Race to adopt your lucky duck or learn more about how Crosswinds Youth Services helps youth in need in their community!
Crisis Intervention Services of Coastal Horizons took a fun and different approach in securing new sponsorships for the 2019 duck season. With the focus on securing their $500 Corporate Duck sponsorships, they invited small, local businesses and hosted a wine & cheese night.
A 3-hour event turned into more than $5,000 in sponsorships along with 6 restaurants agreeing to sell ducks!
The 2nd race of the season happens this Saturday on March 9th! 35,000 rubber ducks will make a splash in Fort Lauderdale, FL for the 13th Annual KID Duck Fest Derby! The quacktivities happen from 12-3 PM at Esplanade Park for family-friendly activities. Adopt a duck and enter for a chance to win $10,000!
All proceeds benefit Kids In Distress who’s mission is to prevent child abuse, preserve the family, and treat children who have been abused and neglected.
To adopt a duck or learn more about Kids In Distress, check out: 2019 Duck Fest Derby
Is your nonprofit looking for a unique event to take your fundraising to the next level? Consider adding a duck race to your fundraising plans! A rubber duck race allows your nonprofit to break away from the same old fundraisers allowing for a broader reach of your organization’s message.
What is a Rubber Duck Race?
A duck race is a fundraising event that allows your nonprofit and community to come together by allowing members of your community to “adopt” a rubber duck for $5. Adopted ducks are then dropped into a waterway and race to the finish line to win prizes for their adoptive parents.
Planning a Rubber Duck Race
- Timeline: A rubber duck race is a signature fundraising event. We recommend you start to plan at least 7-9 months prior to your race date.
- Volunteers: A successful rubber duck race can’t happen without the help of committed volunteers. Volunteer opportunities include duck adoptions, logistics support, tagging party, and more! We consult with our nonprofit racers on ways they can recruit volunteers for their rubber duck race.
- Sponsors: The most important component of a rubber duck race is securing sponsorships. You should be able to say that 100% of every duck adoption is going directly to your organization. Our fundraising team helps each client with sponsorship design that is customized to allow them to secure big bucks for their racing ducks!
- Logistics: You actually don’t need a water source to launch ducks! Besides typical raceways such as rivers and lakes, GAME has experience with a variety of other raceway types.
Promoting a Rubber Duck Race
- Social Media: Social media is just one of the tools you can use to encourage duck adoptions. GAME consults with our nonprofit partners on ways to use social media to promote their race.
- Media Support: You will want to secure media coverage for your event. Media support gives your event more credibility and publicity and saves your nonprofit money on advertising.
- Promotional Ideas: In addition to promoting your duck race on social media, there are different promotional ideas you can implement. We consult with you on ideas that you can use to get the community quacking about your event!
- Mobile-Friendly Software: All of our partners get access to our mobile-friendly software, which was created and optimized especially for duck races.
GAME is Your Rubber Duck Race Partner
Let our fundraising professionals provide you with the necessary tools to run a successful rubber duck race. Contact us at email@example.com or call us at (800) 779-RACE.