Ducky Derby in no danger of sinking |

Ducky Derby in no danger of sinking

Joel Stonington

The Ducky Derby, one of the valley’s most popular fundraisers, is in no danger, despite foreboding comments from the “head duck.”Linda Schmehl, in charge of the event for the Rotary Club of Aspen, told Aspen Chamber Resort Association directors on Tuesday that the Ducky Derby may be in danger next year if too few people buy ducks.”I think she was trying to push sponsorships,” said Bennett Bramson, “deputy duck.” “We’re in good shape.”The only danger to the Derby this year might be the weather. “Let’s just keep praying for rain,” Bramson said. “We need enough water in the river.”Bramson – who will be “head duck” next year – confirmed that the fundraiser has already raised $64,000 through sponsorships. That includes real estate firm Morris & Fyrwald’s increase from $5,000 to $20,000. Money from the Derby, usually the second Saturday in August, goes to dozens of local nonprofits, scholarships and Rotary International projects. Bramson said that Derby adoption papers are already in for the year and will go out to various groups this week. “We’re not in any danger at all,” he said. “We have plenty of prizes.”The Ducky Derby is like a county fair. There are games, food and a bouncy castle. The top duck can win $1 million, skis, grills, clothing, dinners and other donated goodies. “It’s a blast to watch them dump 30,000 ducks into the river,” Bramson said. “At that point it’s anyone’s race.”Joel Stonington’s e-mail address is

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