Duckies to duke it out on Saturday |

Duckies to duke it out on Saturday

It’s time once again for the duckies to duke it.

The annual Ducky Derby, hosted by the Aspen Rotary Club and U.S. Bank, is ready to launch again this Saturday. Thousands of rubber duckies will be dumped into the Roaring Fork River in a mad race to earn prizes for their owners.

The first duck to make it from the No Problem Bridge to the Aspen Art Museum will win its owner a new Volkswagen Bug. Some of the other prizes include a $1,000 shopping spree at Pomeroy Sports, $850 in merchandise from Nuages, round-trip tickets on United Airlines, and a $500 savings bond from Community Bank.

Ducks are available for $5, or a team of 12 ducks can be purchased for $50. A group of 18 ducks can be purchased for $75, and a flock of 25 ducks can be caught for $100. The ducks can be purchased from Rotarians or members of local youth and human services groups, or at the corner of Cooper and Galena streets.

This is the eighth year of the Ducky Derby. The event has netted nearly $700,000 for youth and human services organizations over the years.

“Because of the new focus a lot of us have on young adults and how their various needs are not being met very well, the Ducky Derby is a great opportunity for people to contribute to many of the youth organizations in our valley,” said Rotarian and duck trainer John Sarpa.

Ducky Derby Day starts off with a pancake breakfast for duck owners, sponsored by the Basalt Lions Club, at Rio Grande Park.

Next on the agenda are the “Ducky Waddle” foot races. The Aspen Daily News 5K starts at 8:28 a.m. just west of the Aspen Youth Center. Costumes are encouraged.

A Family Fun 1 Mile Walk follows at 9:17 a.m., with a Toddler 50-Yard Waddle at 10:16 a.m. and the Waddle Race Raffle and awards ceremony at 10:36 a.m.

For more information, call Sarpa at 925-4272, or check the website at

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