There is not a lot that Plumber Dan will not do for charity and that includes climbing onto the back of a giant inflatable duck in the middle of the Whanganui River.

Each year plumber Dan Goldsworthy places the big, yellow inflatable duck on the river so the community will know that the Plumber Dan Duck Race is coming.

And it is on this Saturday.

Competitors purchase $10 tickets for numbered rubber ducklings and each one gets the chance to win a $1000 prize or one of two $500 prizes.


Get your rubber ducky ready for annual Whanganui River race
Whanganui set to go quackers for duck race
Ducks in a dash down Whanganui River
Time to get ducks in a row for Plumber Dan's annual race on Whanganui River


Every purchase also supports Jigsaw Whanganui in their work to strengthen families.

Last year, around 2000 tickets were purchased raising more than $12,000 for the organisation.

Jigsaw administrator Rachel Doble said the funds support the social workers in homes programme.

"It's a very valuable part of our work but it is really hard to meet the costs from our regular funding," Doble said.

"The duck race donation helps to meet the transport costs and other expenses that are incurred."

Goldsworthy has made a few adjustments since he launched the first race in 2016.

He added 400m of plastic pipe in the river to prevent the little ducks from floating off course and attached a lead-filled bottle cap to the bottom of each one to ensure they stay upright in the water.


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Kayakers are employed at the end of the race to ensure ducks are removed from the river to be washed and stored for the next one.

Ducks lined up for the annual Plumber Dan Duck Race.
Ducks lined up for the annual Plumber Dan Duck Race.

"The fourth annual Plumber Dan Duck Race will raise some much-needed funds for families in our community while having a lot of fun alongside our mighty awa," Goldsworthy said.

The race will start from the Dublin St Bridge at 11am on Saturday and ends beside the Waimarie berth when all the ducks arrive home.

Tickets are available online at or purchase from Jigsaw Whanganui at 236 Victoria Ave, Plumber Dan at 176 Victoria Ave, Savages Bakery in the Wanganui East Shopping Centre, Fitzies Bakery in Springvale or Footloose Shoes at 90 Victoria Ave.