TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Catholic Charities hosted it’s 5th annual Rubber Duck Regatta at Fairbanks Park on Monday.

Dozens of community members lined the Wabash River to see 15,000 rubber ducks be released into the river for a good cause.

Community members had the opportunity to adopt a duck for a small fee. These proceeds will go towards Catholic Charities efforts at ending food insecurity in our area. Catholic Charities Assistant Agency Director Jennifer Buell said that with people still reeling from the pandemic and the rising cost of the living, the need to support the community is more important now than every before.

“I think more so than ever it’s so important for organizations like Catholic Charities to be there as a safety net.” Buell said. “We’re providing basic needs and items like food, clothing and shelter.”

Ducks were adopted for over the course of six weeks leading up to the big Independence Day event. Buell said that the regatta was successful and she’s happy to see so many people who want to make a difference in the community.

“The Wabash Valley really is just so helpful and so willing to help their neighbors who maybe are just having a tough time at life right now,” Buell said.

Cathy Hedden is one of many who not only attended the Regatta, but adopted a duck as well. Surrounded by friends, family members and the community, Hedden said that it’s was important for her to adopt a duck. She said that it’s her way of giving back to the community.

“If I need anything I can always call Catholic Charities,” Hedden said. “They would be there and I want to be there.”

After the ducks were released in the river, one lucky duck was drawn. The owner of that duck would receive a $10,000 prize.

The Rubber Duck Regatta kicked off a series of event at Fairbanks Park that would end with fireworks at the park.

Tuesday afternoon Catholic Charities announced that the winner of $10,000 was David Doti of Terre Haute.