Pink rubber duck race to promote breast cancer awareness

Rubber Ducky RGB
(Graphic by Brett Ferrin)

This week, the WSU Women’s Center will kick off national breast cancer awareness month with the inaugural Pink Rubber Duck Race.

The race will be held in the Shepherd Union Building, and will begin Oct. 6 at 11 a.m.

“The race is for students. It’s an event to integrate the fun of homecoming week with breast cancer awareness month,” said Women’s Center Breast Cancer Awareness Chair Jamie Crandal, who is excited to start the first ever duck race at Weber State.

The race will run for two hours and end around 1 p.m. Students will donate money in order to race against other students.

According to Crandal, competitors will eat a large pixie stick and use the packaging as a straw to blow pink rubber ducks down the kiddy pool arena.

At the end of the race the winner will receive a prize.

Dorothy Hill, women’s advocate and program specialist at the Women’s Center, said that prizes will vary from small participant giveaways to t-shirts donated by the athletics department.

“The prizes are really cool,” said Hill, who also added that handouts and fliers will be distributed to inform students about breast cancer.

Hill believes that the duck race is a great way to get students more involved with Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

“It’s something fun for students to do and get the information in the process,” Hill said.

Carol E. Merrill, Women’s Center director, emphasized that bringing more breast cancer awareness to campus is extremely important.

According to her, shedding light on common misconceptions about breast cancer is a primary goal.

“I think that when people think about breast cancer they think older women,” Merrill said. “Unfortunately, breast cancer can happen to anybody at any age.”

Merrill has been part of the Women’s Center for nearly 19 years.

While the Women’s Center focuses on promoting women’s health, Merrill pointed out that men can also get breast cancer.

“We will advocate self-protection, if they are female, but also recognize that breast cancer can happen in men,” Merrill said.

Merrill described how the center will encourage all students to identify and detect breast cancer before it is too late. She also encouraged students to make it a monthly habit for a healthier lifestyle.

“We’re all about preventive maintenance and helping people be aware,” Merrill said. “If we can make a difference in one person’s life, then we’ll be successful.”

The overall goal for her rubber duck campaign is to help people by getting the word out.

Crandall wants people to know that breast cancer is not just an old lady’s disease and that it can affect everybody.

“You don’t have to be 40 to start being aware, because early detection is really important,” Crandal said.

According to Merrill, the Pink Rubber Duck Race will be a new and fun approach to shed light on this growing issue.

“The duck race is just one of those events that can bring more awareness while getting students engaged,” she said. “It also gives us the opportunity to talk about breast cancer.”

Crandal looks forward to watching students get involved during the event.

“I think eating a whole pixie stick at once is going to be funny to watch,” she said. “It’ll be interesting to see how it all goes with students.”

Crandal encourages all students to come to the race to have fun and get informed. All donations will go to cancer research, and everyone is welcome.