After a dry land mishap, nearly 2,000 plastic ducks took the plunge Saturday into the warm water of Castaic Lake’s Paradise Cove for the annual Rubber Ducky Regatta, benefiting the Samuel Dixon Family Health Centers.
While crowds watched from the shore, a giant yellow wooden box was hoisted with a crane from C.A. Rasmussen for the purpose of dangling over the water for the dramatic drop.
The elements seemed to want to toy with the organizers, as a rusted latch proved too weak for the weight of the ducks and gave way while the box was still over the dirt next to the dock, spilling its load and causing lifeguards and kayakers from Friends of Castaic Lake to scramble and collect them for another launch.
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A little ingenuity, duct tape and zip ties provided a temporary fix and the box was successfully raised over the red, white and blue channel ropes. On the countdown of Santa Clarita City Councilman Bob Kellar, the rope was yanked and the ducks dropped in a mass, creating a wide circular wake before heading backwards towards the launch ramp.
After a bit of encouragement from the volunteers, the ducks started their bobbing journey across the channel, aided by kayakers who would scoop up escapees and deposit them back into the yellow mass.
Finally, about a half-hour after their dramatic drop, the ducks ended up at the finish line, winning a seven-day cruise donated by Princess Cruises for duck “adopter” Mary Ann Colf. Colf, who donates her time to help the counselors at the centers, and is a former president of the local Rotary Club that regularly supports them, also won a guitar session from Premier Music Lessons.
The rest of the winners and their prizes:
- Donna Park – Four tickets to Disneyland, plus hotel from Disneyland, Priority One Credit
- Patty Smith – A splash party at Castaic Lake for up to 20 people, from Castaic Lake/LA County Parks
- Joe Godinez – Mother/Daughter makeover from Salon Glo, Shelly Hann and Dan Csicsai
- Joe Chunapongse – In-Home Spa/products from Spa Escape
- Karienn Down – Yoga membership from Yoga Works
- Justin/Kara Best – Yoga membership from Yoga Works
- Diana Shaw – Yoga membership from Yoga Works
- Helene Johnson – Four all-day kayak rentals from Castaic Lake/LA County Parks
- Phil Levy – Beginner piano lesson from Premier Music Lessons
- Julia Levario – Two tickets for Six Flags Magic Mountain from Six Flags
- Judy Tomlinson – Stress-reducing massage from Radiant Wellness
- Jack Purvis – Skating passes for six from Ice Station Valencia
- Jack/Grace Elliott – Avon product basket from Francine Roberts
- Patrick Denny – Gourmet kitchen items from Patti Shinozaki, Pampered Chef
- Heidi McKenzie – Scents and warmer from Mary Gregory, Scentsy
- Tamara Laymon – Kids toys and games from Primerica, Siers & Associates
- Gary/Chi Kanagi – Target gift card from Dave Costanzao, Thorne Financial
- Shannon Dobbe – Magicjack from Ed Bolden
- Tamara Laymon – Magicjack from Ed Bolden
- Kelly Kester-Smith – Discovery Toys from Susie Unkeless, Discovery Toys
- Beverly Herrell – Lady Di’s Cookies from Snow Orthodontics
Ducks dropped from the custom “drop box” built by Charlie Rasmussen ponder their journey
Suddenly, the tide turned and some of the ducks decided they wanted to go UNDER the pier, so lifeguards and volunteers helped re-direct the little quackers