Posted on by Bryan.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 2, 2018 Unfortunately, the Mishawaka Lions Club had to cancel the actual racing of the ducks down the river for our first annual Lucky Duck Dash. Our team which had coordinated the downstream collection of the ducks determined it was unsafe to do so after traversing the river and initially deploying our system for capturing the ducks. The water levels are much higher than normal, the flow of the river is much faster than expected, and we ran the risk of putting people in harm’s way. There was also the environmental and financial concern of losing 5,000 rubber ducks downstream to Lake Michigan. We had planned for rough conditions, but they were more extreme than we had imagined. The Lucky Duck Dash volunteers attempted to shift the launch and collection of ducks at the decorative river channel along Beutter Park, as it is a more controlled environment, but again, with faster and deeper flows than normal, and the inability to navigate boats into that channel, we called the event off after one of our members was injured trying to deploy and secure our nets for capturing the ducks. Per the official rules posted to our event website: "– In case of inclement weather or unforeseen circumstances that prevent the launch of the ducks, prizes will be presented through a random drawing." To be as fair and transparent as possible, we will enter all serial numbers into a randomization software to choose the winners. This is not nearly as exciting as seeing and experiencing the ducks going down the river, but it ensures equity in opportunity to win the grand prize and subsequent prizes. We will be performing the drawing this Thursday (July 5th) at noon. We will announce the winners that afternoon and contact them directly via the information provided on their entries. While we understand the frustration of those who purchased entries, no one is more disappointed than us. This event was more than 5 months in the making with planning, securing the proper permits, purchasing supplies, developing marketing materials, coordinating sponsorships, recruiting volunteers, selling entries, and even numbering all 5,000 ducks by hand. This was in addition to transporting, setting up, and manning the event all day Saturday. Although our official rules provided for unforeseen circumstances, we hate that we must now rely on that provision and will do everything within our power to ensure a successful event in the future. The Mishawaka Lions Club and the Lucky Duck Dash team would like to thank everyone who purchased an entry. Your support, and the proceeds from the event, will still go toward Camp Millhouse and accessible playground equipment in our parks. We will still have a grand prize winner, several subsequent winners of gift cards and prize packages, and we will successfully host this event in the future with a more robust system in place. We also want to extend our gratitude to our sponsors and the many volunteers who committed their time, energy, and enthusiasm to this event. Thanks, Bryan Tanner Mishawaka Lions Club Lucky Duck Dash Event Chair Dismiss