Naperville Riverwalk Duck Race

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Nearly 1,500 rubber ducks made a splash in the DuPage River, where they competed in the annual Riverwalk Duck Race.

Bystanders watched the “fowl play” from a safe distance, as the ducks swam from the footbridge near Centennial Park to the Eagle Street Bridge by the Municipal Center.

“This was one of my favorite events in Naperville, so I think I would like to see this again. My favorite part about this would be how they just pick up when they come toward the net,” said Aidan, an 11-year-old race watcher.

People could adopt a duck for a small fee, with proceeds benefitting the Naperville Riverwalk Foundation, but the event was also “pro-duck-tive” in sending an important message.

“Today was a great day for kids, for ducks, and to teach everybody why it’s important to let wildlife be wild, all kinds of wildlife, whether ducks or geese or water fowl or squirrels or anything. Do not feed the wildlife,” said President of the Naperville Riverwalk Foundation, Stephanie Penick.

The winning duck netted his owner$1,981, 1981 being the year the Riverwalk was founded.

There were second and third place winners, and ten luck ducks who won $36 in honor of the Riverwalk’s 36th year.

Naperville News 17’s Evan Summers reports.