Every year for the last 23 years, a flock of hundreds of ducks has raced down the mighty Boardman River during the National Cherry Festival to support a worthy cause.
This year The Optimist Youth Foundation Inc./ The Optimist Club of Traverse City are directing the race to support youth charities in the Grand Traverse Area.
The Friends of Youth Boardman River Duck Race will be held at 4 p.m. on Thursday, July 7 at the Union Street Bridge near Hannah Lay Park. The finish line is at the Cass Street Bridge near the Traverse City Chamber of Commerce building.
Mark Koval of the Optimist Club, says the public is invited to participate via a corporation/business division or through the individual/youth group yellow rubber duck division.
Individual yellow rubber ducks are being sold to the public for $5 each or a 6-quack (6 ducks) for $25 by TC Figure Skaters, Glen Lake Soccer Team, Northwestern Bank (monies to go to Child and Family Services), and any Optimist member. Eighty percent of whatever is sold is reimbursed to the selling organizations.
Ducks will be numbered prior to launching. First, second, and third place winners for the yellow duck youth competition will receive gift certificates from Meijer for $200, $150, and $100. The next 20 place winners will receive prizes from McClains Bike and Fitness Center. Youth groups interested in selling yellow rubber ducks can contact Jerry Keelan 929-9919 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Businesses can purchase a corporate duck the size of a decoy for $100 from an Optimist member and decorate it to their liking. Divisions in the race include financial institutions, energy, insurance companies, restaurants, attorneys, car dealers, businesses. Call Mark Koval at 313-4995 or Mike Brown at 218-4923 to get your business just ducky.