The 33rd Lumsden Duck Derby wrapped up yesterday with close to 25,000 rubber ducks racing down the Qu’Appelle River through the town.
The event was virtually a sell out this year, despite having sold a total of just 3,000 tickets just three weeks ago.
Organizing committee chair Jamie Lees says she still can’t believe how many ducks they have sold.
“It caught us all off guard,” Lees said. “I guess everybody (was waiting) for the last minute, or just the hype — it was slowly building — no, I still couldn’t believe it.”
Lees says it’s incredible to see that amount of support after the Kraft Hockeyville bid fell just short this spring.
“People are backing us in Saskatchewan, and it’s amazing to feel the support from so many people far and wide,” Lees said. “They knew our name from Hockeyville and that’s how they got going, or it’s just the event itself — it’s been going on for 33 years — people are really backing it.”
Lees says this was the first year the Duck Derby offered online sales.
“In the past, we really didn’t have much of a presence from online sales,” Lees said. “We just put the fact out there that we really needed people’s help this year, and they answered back, it was amazing. We had support pouring in from everywhere.”
The money raise will go towards the ice plant at the Lumsden Community Rink, and possibly an additional hockey dressing room.
One of the original organizers of the Lumsden Duck Derby won this year’s event. Susan Grant from Lumsden picked up the $20,000 grand prize.