Frequently Asked Questions

Learn about our cause and how the duck race works.
Make a contribution:
Adopt a Duck Now!

Where can I drop off a completed adoption certificate if it’s too late to mail it?

The Computer Store, 2001 SW Gage, Topeka

What is the deadline to adopt ducks online?

The deadline to adopt ducks online is 2 PM on Saturday afternoon.

How do I know which duck is mine?

A few days prior to the Sertoma Great Topeka Duck Race, volunteers will place numbered, waterproof tags on the bottom of every duck that will be in the Race, which is 10,000! The “Quack Track” computer program matches your name, with your (paper) adoption certificate #, if you adopted on a paper certificate, and if you adopted online, then it is all done by computer, so the computer program randomly assigns the tag numbers on the bottom of each duck to a duck adopter. Although all the ducks look alike, when they are taken from the water, the tag number will be matched to the name of the adopter. Winners are announced by name, not number, so no need to remember a number.

How do the ducks get in the water?

On Race Day, all the ducks are in a barge on the water in the cove south of the Lake Shawnee swim beach. At 3:00, the barge will release a door and the ducks will fall into the lake. The ducks follow a race course marked with swim pool lane markers, racing to the finish line.

How will I know if my duck wins?

Sertoma will contact you using the information you provided with your duck adoption. You do not need to be present to win.

Are they real ducks or rubber ducks?

Rubber ducks, silly!

Who can adopt a duck?


Once I adopt a duck, do I get to keep it?

No. After you “adopt” your rubber duck; after the Race, all of the ducks will fly off to their next race somewhere in the US.

Do I need to be present to win?

No, the winner does not need to be present to win. We do hope you will join us for the festivities though!

Is my duck adoption tax deductible?

Unfortunately, duck adoptions are not eligible for tax deduction. Please consult with your tax advisor.

Is there an admission fee for the Sertoma Duck Race?

No, the Race is open to the public and is held at Lake Shawnee, south of 29th & Croco, follow the signs to park at the Bettis Sports Complex to walk to the event, OR, park at Tinman Circle to take a free shuttle bus or walk to the event.

Can I adopt ducks on Race Day?

If all of our 10,000 ducks have not been adopted as of Saturday morning, September 14th, the remaining ducks will be available for adoption Saturday until 2:00 when they are dropped into the water.

How do I contact someone at Sertoma if I have questions or issues that are not answered here?

Please contact us by emailing or calling Julie at (785) 221-2014.