Titusville, FL (Florida Today) -- Thanks to a brisk breeze off the Indian River, a bright-yellow bobbing flotilla of roughly 10,000 rubber ducklings traversed the Sand Point Park boat launch channel in near-record time Sunday.
Described by organizers as "quacktacular," the 16th annual Great Brevard Duck Race drew dozens of cheering spectators to the boat ramp behind the Coast Guard Auxiliary building.
Donors "adopted" individually numbered toy ducks for $5 each, "quack packs" of five for $25, and "flocks of fifty" for $250.
Before the race, the ducks lounged en masse inside the bed of a large black Brevard County dump truck. Stakes were high: The first duck to drift into a clear plastic tube at the finish line would win its donor a four-night Disney Cruise Line trip for two to the Bahamas in an oceanview stateroom.
The dump truck dumped the flock into the water, where six kickboard-wielding Boy Scouts herded the birds toward the starting line. Then they were off, clogging the channel beak-to-beak.
"There's nothing like this one: This is a very unique event. Everybody loves ducks. The crowd is great," said Misty Campbell, Crosswinds Youth Services development director.
"This is a fun event. We have a good time here. There's nothing boring about it. Seeing 10,000 ducks come out of a truck, I don't think it's boring," Campbell said.
Some previous races lasted 30 to 40 minutes, she said. But Sunday's wind-aided sprint took a mere 6 minutes.
Pamela Kelly won the Disney cruise, while second-place finisher Jen Hudgin and third-place finisher Aida Seatland each won $500 shopping sprees at Dillard's in Merritt Square Mall.
By the start of the 1 p.m. race, sustained winds inland at Space Coast Regional Airport clocked in at 14 mph from due east with 20 mph gusts, said Amanda Bowen, a National Weather Service meteorologist.
Proceeds benefited Crosswinds Youth Services, a Cocoa organization that deals with youth in crisis. Last year's duck race raised more than $25,000, and Campbell hopes Sunday's event tops $35,000.
The duck contest took place during the weekend-long Indian River Festival.
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