Rotary Club’s Duck Derby sales set to start

NASHUA – Soon, the Rotary Club of Nashua West will host its second annual Duck Derby – and coordinators project the event will go as swimmingly as last year’s.

Yellow rubber ducks will be released into the Nashua River from Front Street on Oct. 19 to raise money for community service organizations.

Though this is the club’s second time conducting the event, duck races are not new in Nashua. Former club President Kim Reagan said several years ago, there used to be a regular Duck Derby in downtown. However, she said this ended approximately 20 years ago.

“The Nashua Rotary West Club was looking for an opportunity to bring the event back to downtown Nashua,” Reagan said. “Last year, it went really well.”

The goal this year is to sell 5,000 rubber ducks. The ducks cost $5 each. Those interested can also purchase a “six-quack” for $25, a “quackers dozen” for $50 or a “Flock” of 25 ducks for $100.

All ducks are sold online at https://www.duckrace.com/nashua.

Thanks to Great American Downtown Executive Director Paul Shea, the club also has a spot at the Nashua Farmers Market to sell ducks on Sundays.

A week before the Duck Derby, ducks will be shipped to the club for a “duck tagging party.” Each duck will get tagged with a serial number, which is how winners will be determined.

Reagan said all money raised from selling ducks and from sponsors will go to the club’s community giving efforts. Last year, club members were able to give more than $43,000 to local nonprofits, such as the Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter, Marguerite’s Place and the Nashua Senior Activity Center. They were also able to give another $20,000 to local high school students.

This year’s event will be larger than last year. On the day of the derby, the club will also be hosting a health fair for children in French Park across from Riverside Barbeque Co. at 11 a.m. Later in the afternoon, there will be a DucktoberFest Launch Party on the deck of Riverside Barbeque, which will overlook the course.

Reagan said they are hoping to have food trucks join, along with a beer tent during the launch party.

The ducks will officially splash into the water at 2 p.m. that day. The first three ducks to land in the trap win. Prizes range from $500 to $2,500.

Reagan said officials chose to conduct the event on Oct. 19 purposely. On that same day, there will be a run at Greeley Park and the 15th annual Nashua ArtWalk.

“What we’re trying to do is help Nashua bring some of these different organizations and events together at one time,” Reagan said. “There are so many things going on in downtown Nashua. There’s something almost every weekend, but it’s nice to have that cohesiveness where we are still working together to get more people into downtown.”

The second annual Duck Derby will be sponsored by various community outlets. Southern New Hampshire Health is the event’s Platinum Sponsor. The event’s Gold Sponsors are Brady Sullivan Properties and The Telegraph. WZID is joining this year as a Gold Media Sponsor. Triangle Credit Union and B&S Integrated Security Systems are silver sponsors.

Other sponsors include Riverside Barbeque Co., Nashua Area Kayak Exploration Destinations, Edward Jones Investments, Ripano Stoneworks Ltd. Remax Properties Nashua, American Environmental Consultants, Inc, PHD Communications, Chick Fil-A, Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Eaton & Berube Insurance Agency, Nashua Chiropractor, JSI Capital Advisors, LLC, Gate City Collision, TD Bank, Barry & Honorow, P.L.L.C, Lavoie Wealth Management, Melanson Heath and Focused Eye Care.

As it gets closer to “Ducktober,” downtown visitors may see large inflatable ducks popping up at random.

Grace Pecci may be reached at 594-1243, or at gpecci@nashuatelegraph.com.