The 13th Annual Newtown Lions Great Pootatuck Duck Race will take place on Saturday, May 25 — the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend — at the park at 5 Glen Road in Sandy Hook Center.
Festivities begin at 10 am and will culminate with ducks going into the river at 2:30 that afternoon. Raffle ticket holders this year are vying for a chance at prizes that are valued at more than $4,300 total.
A large crowd traditionally gathers in the park, along riverbanks, and even along the bridge on Church Hill Road, when Mike Porco uses a bucket loader to tip thousands of yellow rubber ducks into the Pootatuck River. The ducks bob and weave their way to the finish line at the Dayton Street walking bridge, further downstream, where another large crowd has usually gathered to see whose duck has crossed the finish line first.
The “Duck Coop” holding the 20 prize finishers will then be transported to Duck Race Chairman Bob Schmidt, who will announce the winners of the individual prizes.
Prizes will once again be awarded to the ticket holders who hold raffle tickets that correspond with the ducks crossing the finish line.
First prize again this year is $2,000 cash. Second prize is a weekend getaway worth $600 (a $250 Sheraton Hotel gift certificate, a $200 TicketMaster gift certificate, and a $150 American Express Gift Cheque), and this year’s third prize is an electronic game worth $300. The 17 remaining prizes include donated prizes from local restaurants, salon visits, movie passes, and a subscription (or renewal) to The Newtown Bee. (See below for the complete prize list.)
Ongoing entertainment will be offered, with new acts at the top and bottom of each hour. D.J. Bob will open the stage at 10 am. The day will continue with performances by Solid Gold Times Two, with acoustic rock and pop, at 11 am; Newtown musician Jim Allyn, 11:30; Gray School of Irish Dance at noon; The Amazing Magic Marty, 12:30; Newtown Juggling & Circus Act Club, 1 pm; Graceful Planet Moving Arts Center at 1:30; and Newtown Karate Academy (Porco’s Karate School), at 2 o’clock.
Many vendors and local organizations will have booths set up. Among those who are planning to participate are Beautiful Babies, The Children’s Adventure Center, Democratic Town Committee, EverWonder Children’s Museum, FAITH at Newtown, Friends In Service Here (FISH), Freedom Guide Dogs for the Blind, Fun Kuts, The Graceful Planet, Gray School of Irish Dance, Kevin’s Community Center, Newtown Action Alliance, Newtown Babe Ruth League Inc, Newtown Historical Society, Newtown Underwater Search And Rescue (NUSAR), Newtown Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Newtown Youth & Family Services, PJ’s Laundromat, Republican Town Committee, Rowanwood Farm, Sandy Hook Volunteer Fire & Rescue, Smoke & Mirrors Farm, The Cove, Town and Country Garden Club, Visiting Nurses Association, Women Involved in Newtown (WIN), and Working Women’s Forum.
The NHS Newtown Leo Club, an offshoot of Newtown Lions Club, will operate the moon bounce, do face painting, and conduct a duck coloring contest for kids.
Food services will be provided by the NUMC United Methodist Men and Two Brothers Ice Cream.
Duck Race tickets are $5 each and are available from all Lions Club members.
Tickets may still be obtained at the following Newtown establishments: Bagel Delight, Berkshire Motors, C.H. Booth Library, Butcher’s Best, Carminuccio’s, Cork-n-Barrel, Dodgingtown Liquor Store, Dodgingtown Marker, Franco’s Pizza, Fun Kuts, Hawleyville Liquor, Hawleyville Plaza, My Place Restaurant, Newtown Deli & Catering, Newtown General Store, Newtown Hardware, Newtown Municipal Center (Tax Collector’s Office), Pizza Palace, PJ’s Laundromat, Queen Street Cleaners, Salon Michele, Sandy Hook Deli & Catering, Sandy Hook Diner, Sandy Hook Hair Company, Sandy Hook Liquor, Shear Image, Stop & Save Liquor, Stop & Shop, Superior Cleaners, The Toy Tree, Village Barber Shop, World of Wine & Spirits, Yankee Discounts Liquor, and Your Healthy Pet.
Any tickets still available on Saturday, May 25, will be sold at the park, but only as supplies last.
2013 Duck Race Prize List
1 — $2,000 Cash Prize
2 — Weekend Getaway ($250 Sheraton Hotel gift certificate, $200 TicketMaster gift certificate, and $150 American Express Gift Cheque)
3 — $500 gift certificate to Sal e Pepe Restaurant
4 — Club NewFit for four month membership (valued at $210)
5 — Club NewFit for four month membership (valued at $210)
6 — Family pass to Treadwell Park (valued at $200)
7 — $110 gift certificate to Gary’s Rib House
8 — $100 gift certificate to figs
9 — $100 gift certificate to Salon Michelle
10 — $80 gift certificate to Sal e Pepe
11 — $50 gift certificate to Carminuccio’s Pizza
12 — $50 gift certificate to Berkshire Motors
13 — $50 gift certificate to Tambascio’s Italian Grill
14 — $50 gift certificate to Pizza Palace Restaurant
15 — $42 gift certificate to Naser’s Salon
16 — Two tickets to any show at The Little Theater (Town Players of Newtown, valued at $40)
17 — One-year subscription or renewal to The Newtown Bee (valued at $40)
18 — $25 gift certificate to Roberto’s Restaurant
19 — $25 gift certificate to My Place Restaurant
20 — Ten movie passed for Edmond Town Hall Theatre (valued t $10)