The Samuel Dixon Family Health Center officials brought thousands of rubber duckies to Bridgeport Park in Valencia on Saturday.
“This is our 11 Annual Rubber Ducky Festival and it’s a great event,” said Mayor Bob Kellar. “You can tell, even in spite of the wind today, so many people came out and are having fun with this.“
The festival is SDFHC’s signature fundraising event, providing patient care funding throughout the year. Last year they raised more than $90,000 for patient care at SDFHC’s three health centers in Canyon Country, Newhall and Val Verde.
“All of the proceeds of this event go to the uninsured and underinsured families in the Santa Clarita Valley,” said Philip Solomon, chief operating officer for the Samuel Dixon Family Health Center. “All of our clinics have been around for many years, since the seventies. Our mission is to provide health services to those who don’t have any health coverage.”
Participants adopted their ducks and were entered to win $250 Cash gift card, a $100 gas card and a gift basket of women’s beauty products if they entered early.
“We are at 3,300 adopted ducks. By the time of the last race, we hope to have 5,000 ducks in the race,” Solomon said. “That is our goal every year.”
Prizes for winning ducks include:
- Grand Prize: $2,500 cash gift card
- Second Prize: $1,500 cash gift card
- Third Prize: $500 cash gift card
In-N-Out Burger, Downtown Dogs and Tango Mango Italian Ice Co. were part of the events food vendors.
“It’s turning out to be a great event for us,” said Cheryl Laymon, executive director of the Samuel Dixon Family Health Center. “This is our second year at Bridgeport and it’s made a difference because the participation has been really, really good.”
Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich served as this year’s Honorary Chairman; City of Santa Clarita Mayor Bob Kellar returned as Master of Ceremonies; Ed Bolden, SDFHC vice president of fundraising, served as this year’s festival chairman.
“This is the major fundraiser for the Samuel Dixon Family Health Center,” said Kellar. “There are about 250 people here. There are so many different organizations and entities out here to support the Center. It is fonominal.”
In addition to duck races, games and activities, the event featured entertainment and food trucks including In-N-Out Burger, Downtown Dogs and Tango Mango Italian Ice Co. Local sponsors for this event include Santa Clarita Valley Rotary, Providence Holy Cross Medical Center, Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital, Point of View Communications, SOS Entertainment, C.A. Rasmussen Inc, HandsOn Santa Clarita, Burrtec Waste Industries, Inc, as well as KHTS AM 1220.
“We want to sell 10,000 duckies next year. We’re lining our duckies up, thats what we’re doing,” Laymon said. “Everyone has been behind us and we just couldn’t do it without all of the support.”