Burnin' rubber: thousands of ducks race down the Willamette

Burnin' rubber: thousands of ducks race down the Willamette »Play Video

EUGENE, Ore. -- Over 70,000 rubber duckies hit the Willamette River Saturday for the 25th anniversary of the Great Rotary Duck Race.

The Duck Race is the largest collaborative fund raising campaign by Rotarians in the county. In terms of duck races, it's the second largest in the country.

While each ticket-holder hoped that their numbered duck would be the one to make it downriver, they knew that their $5 donation went to something much bigger.

For Burnell Ambrose, selling tickets took on a whole new meaning.

"I can't stand the thought of a child being abused, so that is what drives me," said Ambrose. "I don't count tickets, I just count books."

This salesman has been involved with the Great Rotary Duck Race for years, but this year Ambrose was honored with the title of "Papa Duck". He sold 205 books, or 5,000 tickets to help end child abuse.

This year 70,109 duck tickets were sold, making for the second highest number of ducks released in the Great Rotary Duck Race.