Although the ducks are being “adopted,” the money donated on behalf of the plastic pals will help the NHS take care of the real-life animal friends currently at the shelter.
Ducks can be purchased for $5 apiece and will be released down the Truckee River at 4 p.m. Sunday from Wingfield Park in Reno. The fundraiser, which has helped other charities in the past, will be used for the first time to help NHS, which hopes to make the event fun for everyone who goes downtown to participate.
“We’re very excited,” said Diane Blankenburg, NHS’ community programs and development director.
Blankenburg said the nonprofit is hoping to sell 10,000 ducks and believes the goal is just within reach.
“We think we’ll be there and if not, we’ll be close,” Blankenburg said.
In addition to prizes for the fastest ducks down the river, the fundraiser will include entertainment and food.
“It’s tough for profit businesses to donate right now but there are a lot of businesses locally that have donated products,” Blankenburg said. “Also, all the entertainment is for free; they have donated their time.”
Entertainment includes the Tim Tucker Band, the Note-Ables, a dance exhibition by Never Enough Ballroom and a gymnastics and dance performance by Starz Gymnastics, Dance and Cheer. Also, local photographer Jeff Ross will be on hand to sign event posters that were photographed by him.
Tasty treats for humans will include roasted corn and lemonade as well as hot dogs from Freeman’s Natural Hot Dogs, beer from Buckbean Brewing Co. and ice cream from Baskin Robbins.
Blankenburg said she hopes the community gets involved to help NHS help the animals.
“The whole animal cause crosses all boundaries,” Blankenburg said. “People really like to support the animals and we have been really fortunate to have a lot of supporters in this community.
“I think what’s great about this event is that you get the opportunity to win cool prizes and have a good time, but if you don’t win you’re still helping the homeless pets in the community,” Blankenburg added.
People who choose to support the duck race can rest assured that their money is directly helping the animals who need it.
“A very large percentage of our funds goes directly to the animals,” Blankenburg said. “We have a very low overhead and we try to keep it that way so as much money as possible goes to the animals.”
Blankenburg also said NHS does not receive financial help from the American Humane Society, which is a separate nonprofit, and encouraged people who wanted to support the local humane society to donate directly.
“We appreciate any support we can get,” Blankenburg said. “We completely run on donations.”
While the Nevada Humane Society is making strides toward a no-kill community, Blankenburg reminds the public that there are always animals in need of loving families to give them forever homes.
“We had our largest adoption month ever — ever in the life of the organization — in the month of July,” Blankenburg said.
To purchase a rubber duck, visit the shelter at 2825 Longley Lane in Reno, visit www.nevadahumanesociety.org or call 856-2000.