The giant rubber duck that took over Toronto last weekend now has some numbers to back up its dominance.
So while it seemed that everyone and their cousin had a selfie with the famous fowl, we can now confirm that, in fact, (nearly) everyone did. That’s because Redpath Waterfront Festival co-producer Lea Parrell is now estimating that more than 750,000 people attended the festival over its 3-day run.
In fact, on Canada Day alone, more than 500,000 people are thought to have laid eyes on the giant rubber duck. It was so busy on Canada Day that a local coffee shop had to close by 4 pm because it was out of everything… including coffee.
According to Parrell:
The event surpassed all previous attendance records, actually in the first day! Saturday saw over 500,000 visitors and we estimate that in total over the three days over 750,000 people came down. If you add in the attendance for Harbourfront Centre’s Canada Day fireworks, we believe over 1 million people were at the waterfront this weekend.
The festival is also trying to clear up misinformation about the cost of the duck. Again, from Parrell:
We received a grant for $121,000 from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism and from that grant we paid $21,000 U.S. to rent the Duck to come to Toronto. The balance of the grant was to pay for fencing, extra security, extra washrooms, marketing, signage, a tug boat, a crane, a forklift, and other event expenses around the Duck. Expenses that any event would have to pay regardless of their programming. So, the Duck did not cost $121,000.
The giant rubber duck will continue its summer Ontario 150 tour, making its way to Owen Sound next weekend followed by stops in Sault Ste. Marie, Midland, Amherstburg, and Brockville as well.
So if you missed this all-important selfie opportunity, you can still go duck
hunting chasing across Ontario this summer to get it.