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Ducks to race down Nashua River Saturday

By Mathew Plamondon | Oct 16, 2019

NASHUA — For the second straight year, thousands of rubber ducks will float down the Nashua River from the Greeley House at 12 Front St., vying to be the first rubber fowl to finish for a good cause, as the Rotary Club of Nashua West raises money for the 40-plus charities the nonprofit supports.

Starting from the Water Street location at 2 p.m., the ducks – which are being sold for a donation of $5 – will head down the river until they can float themselves to the finish line at the Main Street Bridge, with the first three duck finishing winning prizes of $2,500, $1,000 and $500 for the individual who adopted them.

With so many rubber ducks racing down the river, the public will be witness to sea of yellow floating toward the Main Street Bridge on their way down the river, during an even t that will have plenty of fun for participants, children and their families.

“Riverside Barbecue will have a duck viewing party on their deck as a part of their Ducktober Fest,” said Kimberly Reagan, who has previously served at the club’s president.

“Starting at 11 a.m. in French park, there will be activities for the kids, the Get Quackin’ Healthy Kid’s area, which is hosted by our platinum sponsor, Southern New Hampshire Health. There will be the city of Nashua’s Health Bus and the Hannaford nutritionist (who) will be there talking about healthy eating options, and there will be cross-fit.”

With so many community events taking place Saturday, like ArtWalk 2019, having the derby as part of a citywide celebration will create a nice flow through Nashua.

“There’s actually four events happening this weekend. You have the Monster Dash in Greeley Park, and City Arts Nashua is having their ArtWalk that many of the venues downtown are participating in.” Reagan said. “You have the Duck Derby on the Bridge and at Riverside, and then there is a Mine Falls clean-up event happening as well.”

“Part of this is to try to continue to bring folks to downtown Nashua,” she added. “We felt like it was an important weekend to do the duck derby, because there was already a lot of people who are going to be downtown, and we are hoping to support each other and it also gives the people here from ArtWalk another element to enjoy.”

As of Tuesday, Rotary West has raised more than $13,500, and have had over 3,000 of their ducks adopted out of their 5,000 duck goal. The proceeds from the race go to nonprofits and charities throughout Greater Nashua, including the Front Door Agency, Nashua Children’s Home, Marguerites Place, the Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter the Senior Center, as well as a handful of other organizations.

Reagan said along with the $13,500 dollars raised by donations, the derby also has raised another $20,000 in sponsorships, all of which will be split between the charitibel organizations and the nonprofit’s local scholarship program.

Those interested in adopting a duck and participating with a chance to win one of the prizes can do so with a minimum donation of $5.

Participants also can adopt a “Six Quack” of six ducks for $12 and “Quackers Dozen” of 12 ducks for $25. People also can adopt their own “Flock” of 25 bath-time buddies for a donation of $100.

Anyone hoping to adopt a duck can do so at the Rotary Club of Nashua West’s Duck Derby event page, https://www.duckrace.com/nashua or www.nashuaduckderby.com, by noon on Saturday. They also will have a table set up to adopt ducks during race-day festivities up until two hours before the ducks are released.

“There’s still time for people to get ducks, and we can sell ducks two hours before the launch,” Reagan said “Last year, we sold one of the ducks two hours before, and it was one of the winners.”

This year, the derby is sponsored by a variety of different community organizations, including Platimun Sponsor, Southern New Hampshire Health, and Gold Sponsors The Telegraph and Brady Sullivan Properties, as well as new Gold Media Sponsor WZID. Joining the Gold and Platinum Sponsors are Silver Sponsors B&S Integrated Systems and Triangle Credit Union.

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 PLLC, Lavoie Wealth Management, Melanson Heath and Focused Eye Care.

Mathew Plamondon can be reached at 594-1244 or mplamondon@nashuatelegraph.com, @telegraph_MatP.


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