Ryan Scott Ottney
PDT Staff Writer
Cars honk as they drive past a giant rubber ducky parked in front of Portsmouth Feed and Supply store on Second Street. The duck is part of the the third annual United Way Ducky Derby, coming up on Sept. 1, and will be part of the River Days Parade on Aug. 31.
Mary Ann Miars-Peercy, executive director of the United Way of Scioto County, said the giant duck was once part of the annual Special Wish Ducky Derby, but had been sitting in a garage in Portsmouth until the United Way pulled it out and gave it some fresh feathers last year.
The duck will accompany the United Way in the River Days Parade in Portsmouth, on Saturday, Aug. 31, and then it will be at the Court Street Street Landing in Portsmouth for the United Way Ducky Derby on Sunday, Sept. 1.
Registration opens at 11 a.m. for the children’s Little Quackers ducky race, beginning at noon at the Court Street Landing in Portsmouth. Special prizes will be given out, and the race is free for kids age 12 and under. After the children’s race, the Ducky Derby will begin. Each duck is numbered to match the numbers on raffle tickets, and if your ticket number matches the number on the duck when it crosses the finish line, you win!
Raffle tickets are on sale now for $5 each, or a Quack Pack of five tickets for $20. Tickets are available at the United Way office in Portsmouth and online at www.uwsciotocounty.org; also at Desco and Portsmouth Feed & Supply in Portsmouth, and at Dr. Karr’s office in West Portsmouth. Tickets will be sold the day of the derby — if any are still available.
The grand prize this year is a 1999 Ford Contour, four-door sedan, donated by Pistole’s Auto on U.S. 23. First place after that is $500; then $300 for second place, and $150 for third place. After that, there are about 50 smaller prizes, like Mary Kay and local gift cards, for the next ducks that cross the finish line. The “Lame Duck” that finishes dead last will win $50.
Last year more than 300 ducks raced in the derby, and this year Miars-Peercy is hoping for even more.
The proceeds from raffle sales go to help the United Way of Scioto County’s childhood literacy program, “United We Read.” Miars-Peercy said one-in-six kids don’t have a single book in their household.
For more information about the United Way of Scioto County, or the Ducky Derby on Sept. 1, visit the United Way online at www.uwsciotocounty.org.
Ryan Scott Ottney may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 287, or firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Ryan on Twitter @PDTwriter.