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Kappa Sigma fraternity raises money for military families, friends

The Kappa Sigma fraternity had its second annual Rubber Ducky Race March 3 to benefit the Military Heroes campaign. 

The event, which has nearly doubled in participation and profit from last year, took place at the Osprey Fountain’s lazy river, said Stephen Catalano, sports management sophomore and philanthropy chair for Kappa Sigma. It featured the racing of several hundred decorated rubber duckies for a chance to win prizes to local stores and businesses. The event raised about $2,300, Catalano said.

All chapters of Kappa Sigma nationwide raise funds to benefit the Military Heroes campaign. Specific causes are supported within this campaign by individual fraternities. The UNF chapter donates all proceeds from the event to the Fisher House Foundation, Catalano said.

The Fisher House Foundation has comfort houses throughout the country that offer a “home away from home” for loved ones wishing to stay close as servicemen recuperate from injuries sustained while at war.

The proceeds from the 2010 Rubber Ducky Race helped build a new house for the Fisher House foundation.

Josh Williamson is a computer information science senior and member of Kappa Sigma. He is part of the philanthropy committee for the fraternity, and said fraternity brothers from around the nation were the inspiration to donate to Fisher House.

“A lot of our brothers from around the country are why we do this because they’ve actually stayed in Fisher Houses, which is how we learned about the foundation,” Williamson said. “A lot of our brothers here on campus, especially our founding fathers, have been in the military. So we’ve always had really strong ties with the military in general.”

Williamson said the success of the 2010 race prompted the fraternity to hold another one this year.

“Last year, we had just over 100 people register ducks,” he said. “People just ate it up, ‘cause it’s rubber ducks. No one wants to say ‘no’ to rubber ducks.”

Andres Hernandez, and education junior and director of pledges for Kappa Sigma, said all 48 active members of the fraternity, as well as unaffiliated brothers and alumni, helped with the event.

Catalano said all of the brothers get an allotment of ducks to sell to friends, family and members of other clubs or organizations.

“Last year, we raised about $1300, this year, we’re trying to double it,” Catalano said.

Catalano said 400 ducks were sold, 260 of which were registered in the race. He also said 267 people attended the race, according to the Facebook group dedicated to the event.

Prizes were given out to the top 30 winners of the race, and totaled nearly $1,300.

Williamson said this event grosses the most money of any of their other events during the year.

Cindy Campbell, vice president of media relations at Fisher House, said the money will help fund new projects and continue to help the organization grow. She said Fisher House just opened its 54th house and donations such as Kappa Sigma’s allow the organization to continue to reach out and help the community.

Hernandez said the fraternity will be participating in several upcoming events, including Relay for Life and sororities’ philanthropies.

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