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Giant rubber duck was an economic boon, festival says

Last Updated Oct 12, 2017 at 3:37 pm EDT

A giant rubber duck is seen on Toronto's harbourfront on June 30, 2017. CITYNEWS

A Toronto waterfront festival that hosted an unexpectedly controversial giant rubber duck says it generated millions of dollars in economic activity.

The Redpath Waterfront Festival says a study conducted by Enigma Research shows the economic impact of the festival was a record $7.6 million.

About 750,000 people attended, which the festival attributes in part to the attraction billed as the world’s largest rubber duck.

The six-storey, 13,600-kilogram yellow duck was brought to Toronto by the festival at a total cost of $200,000.

The Ontario government gave the festival an approximately $120,000 grant, which Opposition politicians called an absurd use of taxpayer dollars.

The festival says area businesses reported record sales over that Canada Day weekend and that water taxis received a boost in business after a challenging summer due to Toronto island closures.

Here are some facts and figures about the giant duck and festival.

  • Economic impact of festival: $7.6 million
  • Festival attendance: 750,000
  • Percentage of tourists who attended: 31
  • Height of duck: six storeys
  • Weight of duck: 13,600 kilograms
  • Cost to bring duck to Toronto: $200,000
  • Funding from province: $120,000
  • Funding from federal government: $250,000 (for six-city tour)


With files from News Staff