RVA Duck Race & Festival of Inclusion Returns to Richmond This August

June 15, 2023 –  The Autism Society of Central Virginia (ASCV) is proud to announce the return of the RVA Duck Race & Festival of Inclusion, presented by CoStar, to Brown’s Island on August 5, 2023 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 8,000 attendees will join together to watch 17,000 rubber ducks float down the canal and race toward the finish line for the chance to win the $10,000 grand prize sponsored by fas mart® among other unique local prizes. 

“Last year, we started a new Richmond tradition by introducing the Festival of Inclusion,” says Executive Director, Ann Flippin. “Our goal was to create a space that not only created disability-inclusive activities and experiences for our families, but also celebrated neurodiversity with our broader RVA community.”

The sensory-friendly festival is designed to include and accommodate individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities. In addition to live performances, local food, and entertainment, local businesses will bring five different Festival of Inclusion zones to life during the 2023 event. See a list of all of the festival zones here.

New this year, the Festival of Inclusion will feature signage for each booth to indicate the sensory level of each exhibitor experience on a scale from 1 to 5 and what senses the activity will engage (sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste). In addition, the main stage will feature an interpreter to amplify the inclusiveness of the entire experience. 

“Richmond is so well known for incredible events and festivals.” says Flippin. “Ours provides families in our disability community with an opportunity to feel at home and enjoy a festival experience. At the same time, we welcome all members of the community to join us and see inclusion in action. We know these interactions will have ripple effects throughout the community long after the event is over.”

The ASCV serves more than 7,000 community members a year and hosts 360+ programs a year. 

“The need for our programs grows every year, and our team works hard to expand our programs to meet the increased demand.” says Flippin. “So far in 2023, we have hosted 50% more programs than this time last year, with 60% more total participants.”

In March 2023, the CDC released new data showing that the prevalence rate of autism diagnoses has increased to 1 in 36 children. That makes Autism the fastest-growing developmental disability in the United States. Here at the ASCV, we have witnessed an increase in demand for resources and services. 

“The RVA Duck Race & Festival of Inclusion is an important way for us to bring awareness to our mission and raise critical funds for our work to meet the growing demands of our community,” Flippin says. 

All are encouraged to purchase Duck Entries online leading up to the event and help the ASCV reach its goal of selling 17,000 ducks: www.rvaduckrace.org.

Each Duck Entry is a chance to win incredible prizes, including the $10,000 Grand Prize sponsored by fas mart®. In addition, Flagstop Car Wash is awarding three RVA Duck Race winners with an RVA Wash Club Membership, which is a year of unlimited car washes! In addition, everyone who purchases 25 or more duck entries will receive a complimentary car wash courtesy of Flagstop Car Wash.

Thank You to the 2023 RVA Duck Race & Festival of Inclusion Sponsors: 


For more than 40 years, the Autism Society of Central Virginia (ASCV) has been proud to serve as one of the region’s premier sources of education, advocacy, services, and support for individuals with autism, their families and friends, and professionals. ASCV’s mission is to support, empower, and build connections to improve the lives of all in our local autism community.

Learn more about ASCV: https://ascv.org
Purchase Duck Entries for the event: rvaduckrace.org