Aspen’s Ducky Derby, wedding fit to be tied
August 13, 2010
ASPEN – The 19th annual Aspen Ducky Derby has a matrimonial twist.
Second-home owners Gayleen Dent and Michael Rothrock have been planning their wedding for about a year, scheduling it for Saturday in the John Denver Sanctuary. As a result of that comical scheduling snafu, they will be joined, after reciting their vows, by thousands of rubber duckies racing down the Roaring Fork River.
Two of the ducks, purchased by this year’s event coordinator, Andy Regan, or “Head Duck,” as the Aspen Rotary Club likes to call her, will be dressed in wedding attire as a bride and groom.
Everyone who attends the wedding will adopt a duck, which remain on sale for $10 or less, depending on how many are purchased at a time. Twenty ducks cost $100, Regan said.
Dent said she and Rothrock, of San Francisco, originally thought they would have to relocate their wedding, and had offers from the Aspen Historical Society, the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies and the Aspen Club to host the ceremony. But they decided to embrace the Rotary Club’s mission and the ducks.
The ducks will float by just after the reception at noon.
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The Rotary Club, which hosts the event every year to raise funds for college scholarships for local students and charity operations in Third World countries by Rotary International, rented 28,000 ducks this year.
And “I’m hoping that we’ll sell all 28,000 ducks,” Regan said.
Last year, the organization rented 25,000, but had to bring in 3,000 more at the last minute to accommodate everyone who wanted a duck. In the event’s almost two decades, 2007 is the high-water mark for most ducks adopted with 30,000, Regan said.
Dent said she and Rothrock plan to move to Aspen as soon as they can afford to.
Ducks can be purchased until 11 a.m. Saturday at http://www.aspenrotary.org.