17th annual Samuel Dixon Duck Dash Festival at Bridgeport Park

Young ducky enthusiasts from left, Alexander Villanueva Amina, 2, and Saliah Antoine, 6, Nicolas, 2, and Nathan Cabrera, 6, watch the rubber duckies float by during a test run at the 10th annual Rubber Ducky Festival at Bridgeport Park on Saturday. Signal photo by Dan Watson.
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By Kimberly Silverio-Bautista 

For The Signal

The 17th annual Samuel Dixon Family Health Centers Duck Dash is set for Saturday, Oct.12 at the Bridgeport Park in Valencia from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The event offers the community a chance to “adopt” rubber ducks, with packages that ranging from  $5 to $100, with the money supporting the free and low-cost community health clinics. 

The ducks are then released into the water at Bridgeport Park, where attendees are able to watch them “race” in the water. Cash prizes range from $100 to $2,000 for the winners of the race, in addition to other prizes. 

“It’s a fun event,” said Gloria Mercado-Fortine, chair of the board of directors for Samuel Dixon Family Health Center. “We build a water way, and it’s awesome to see the ducks on the water.”

The purpose of the event is to raise awareness and funds for the Sam Dixon Health Centers, which provide mental, dental and health care for those who aren’t able to access it, according to event officials. For example, if a person adopts seven rubber ducks, they’ve paid for someone’s entire visit for health services, according to a news release for the event. 

The family-friendly activities include musical performance, rubber duck-racing contests, prizes, food truck and a health booth. Games will be provided for the community, as well, according to organizers.

Rock climbing, face painting and other activities will be provided for families to take part of, as well as booths from various community resources. Children will have the chance to decorate a rubber duck and race it in a kids-only race called “Duck-O-Ration.” 

Dorrel Salmon and Island Passion Band are the artists that will be performing authentic Carribean music. 

All proceeds will go to the Samuel Dixon Family Health Center. A non-profit organization established in 1980. It provides health resources, support and guidance for the underserved community in the Santa Clarita Valley and nearby communities.

For this year, more than 1,600 ducks have been adopted so far, raising more than $7,000. The overall goal is for 5,000 rubber ducks, which can be adopted online, at the event and the three Sam Dixon locations in Val Verde, Canyon Country and Newhall.

The event itself is free of charge. For more information, visit www.duckrace.com/scv.

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