The ducks a re 'released' during this year’s Rotary Duck Dip.

Public flocks to Rotary Duck Dip

The Rotary Quacker 5000 – better known as the Duck Dip – was held downtown for the first time this year, and the move seems to have gone over pretty well.

“It seems like we have more families here than some years,” said Duck Dip organizer Dave Bazowski Saturday afternoon. “That’s great. That was one of the things we were trying to encourage by having it down here and having it be a bit more visible.”

The family-friendliness of the event was highlighted by the water fight between children and Rotary members, a bouncy castle, a petting zoo, face painting and other activities that accompanied the event in previous years, but this year there were also remote controlled boats courtesy the Nanaimo Boat Modellers Club, who supplied the pool for the dip, since there obviously isn’t one at Spirit Square.

One by one the ducks came out of the pool, awarding their owners prizes ranging from a round of golf for four at Storey Creek Golf Course with power cart to spa packages to trips to Vancouver to see the Canucks.

And then an audible groan – although a friendly, light-hearted one – came up from the crowd as local realtor and former city councillor Roy Grant took home the grand prize of $5,000 cash.

Final totals from this year’s event are not available as yet, but Rotary had hoped to continue their trend of raising between $35,000 and $40,000 for community projects and initiatives.

The money from the dip, Bazowski says, goes towards everything from scholarships for high school graduates going off to post-secondary to major projects like the Willow Point Water Park or the Mountain Bike Park, which were both recipients from previous years’ events.