More than 28,000 ducks are dumped into the pond at Lincoln Park in Port Angeles during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

More than 28,000 ducks are dumped into the pond at Lincoln Park in Port Angeles during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles resident wins new car in Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby

PORT ANGELES — Daniel Thompson didn’t make it to the Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby on Sunday, but he won the top prize.

Thompson’s yellow rubber duck — one of more than 28,000 entered into Sunday’s 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby — was the first to float over the finish line, earning Thompson a 2017 Toyota Corolla donated by Wilder Toyota of Port Angeles. The derby was at the Lincoln Park ponds.

“I’m still in shock,” the Port Angeles man said a couple hours after the race ended.

He said that when one of his friends called telling him he had won the car Sunday, he thought he was kidding.

“But he said, ‘no, you got it,’ ” Thompson said, adding he has never won anything like a new car.

“You don’t go through this kind of shock very often,” he said.

Thompson said that in addition to his car, he’s going to keep his Dodge pickup.

“I’ve gotta keep my truck,” he said.

He said he is thankful the duck derby is in the community and that the Wilder family has continued to support it.

In total, 45 prizes worth about $25,000 total were up for grabs this year with proceeds benefiting the Olympic Medical Center Foundation and the Sequim Rotary Club’s charitable projects.

Bruce Skinner, co-chair for the event, said it’s one of the OMC Foundation’s top fundraisers and that this year’s derby was the most profitable out of any in recent years.

He said the final number hasn’t been figured yet, but he estimates the duck derby raised some $100,000.

Skinner said it’s not unusual for the first-place winners to be absent from the race. Not one first-place winner in the derby’s 28 years has actually attended the race, he said.

This year only one of the 45 winners was actually at the race, he said.

The race began as a dump truck full of rubber ducks, which was parked on the bank above the pond, upended its load.

The rush of ducklings were pushed down a chute by streams of water from fire hoses operated by firefighters with Port Angeles Fire Department and Clallam County Fire District No. 2.

The horde of ducks that entered the water at the beginning slowly inched across the pond toward the finish line.

One by one, the first 100 ducks to cross the finish line were carefully documented and placed in plastic bags so they could be paired with their ticket owners.

Following the race, crews carefully corralled the ducks and removed them from the pond.

________

Reporter Jesse Major can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56250, or at jmajor@peninsuladailynews.com.

Bob Lovell, co-chair of the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby, hands over a winning duck to be recorded Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Bob Lovell, co-chair of the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby, hands over a winning duck to be recorded Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Ducks race to the finish line during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby in Port Angeles on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Ducks race to the finish line during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby in Port Angeles on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Volunteers line up Very Important Ducks for their race before the main event during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby in Port Angeles on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

Volunteers line up Very Important Ducks for their race before the main event during the 28th annual Great Olympic Peninsula Duck Derby in Port Angeles on Sunday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

More in News

Port Angeles School Superintendent Marty Brewer, second from right, speaks with members of the Port Angeles Parents for Education, on Friday about the Port Angeles Paraeducation Association strike. Assistant Superintendent Michele Olsen stands at right. (Paula Hunt/Peninsula Daily News)
District, PAPEA to pick up bargaining Sunday

Parent group presses officials for answers on strike

Instructor Josh Taylor, left, points out the workings of an electric vehicle on Wednesday at the Auto Technology Certification Program at Peninsula College. Nick Schommer, center, and Brian Selk get ready to do some testing on the electric auto’s parts from underneath the vehicle. (Dave Logan/for Peninsula Daily News)
College’s automotive technology program gets a reboot

Students can earn a certificate separate from two-year degree

Port Townsend transportation tax dollars to be put to work

Benefits district to raise $400,000 to $600,000 in first year

KEITH THORPE/PENINSULA DAILY NEWS
Retired teacher Nancy McCaleb speaks in support of striking paraeducators in the Port Angeles School District as Port Angeles Paraeducators Association President Rebecca Winters listens during a rally on Thursday at Shane Park.
About 130 rally in support of paras

District officials say funding is statewide problem

Mark Nichols.
Proposed changes to public defender caseloads could hurt rural counties

Annual limits starting in 2025 may create staffing issues

Fernando Cruz of Auburn, an employee of Specialized Pavement Marking in Pacific, cleans off a sign he used to paint a bicycle lane on Sims Way and Kearney Street, the site of the new roundabout. The workers needed at least two days of 47 degrees or above in order to paint the pedestrian crosswalks and other necessary markings. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)
New bike lane in Port Townsend

Fernando Cruz of Auburn, an employee of Specialized Pavement Marking in Pacific,… Continue reading

Two-lane bypass to be installed Monday

Contractor crews working for the state Department of Transportation will… Continue reading

Twice daily bridge inspections start next week

Bridge preservation engineers from the state Department of Transportation will… Continue reading

Funding farm-to-school programs

In the 2021-2023 state budget, Washington set aside money specifically for the… Continue reading

Gus Griffin, 11, second from left, and classmates dig up weeds in one of Port Townsend’s three gardens on March 28. (Grace Deng/Washington State Standard)
Farm-to-school programs flourish in Washington

Demand from school districts outpacing state funding

Jefferson enacts 1-year moratorium on STRs

County wants to consider possible regulations for rentals