Town Talk 09/03/19: 10th Annual Ducky Derby to Feature Festival-Like Atmosphere

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100.1 FM / 1450 AM WIZS; Local News broadcasts M-F 8am, 12pm, 5pm

Franklin-Granville-Vance Smart Start will hold its annual Ducky Derby Festival and rubber duck race, a fundraiser for the local Smart Start program, on Saturday, September 21, 2019, in downtown Henderson. The festival begins at 12 p.m. on Breckenridge Street between Perry Memorial Library and the Henderson Police Department.

According to Garry Daeke, development coordinator for F-G-V, this year’s activities include a bounce house and slide, face painting, corn hole, ring toss, balloon animals and performances by the Baby Shark and Paw Patrol characters.

Vendors will be on hand serving hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, sausage dogs, fish sandwiches, corn on the cob, funnel cakes, ice cream and snow cones.

Entertainment will include a DJ, singing performances from several daycare programs, music from Henderson Collegiate, Mary Potter Elementary School band and choir and the drumline from Granville Central High School.

The YMCA will lead line dancing and Zumba in the street and children will have the opportunity to man a real firehose with the assistance of the Henderson Fire Department.

Each child that attends the event will receive a free book, courtesy of Smart Start. Parents will also have the opportunity to enroll any child age birth to 5 in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a program that sends a book each month to children at their home.

“Our goal is to enroll 1,000 more children from this area into the program,” said Daeke. “We recently reached over 3,000 children enrolled and we are trying to get to 4,000 before the year is over. That would put us at 45-50% of the young children in the Franklin, Granville and Vance County areas that will be getting books in the mail.”

Safe Kids will also be present and will set up childcare safety seat inspections.

At 2 p.m., the entertainment switches to Garnett Street, where the rubber duck race will take place. Up to 2,000 rubber ducks will be poured into the Garnett Street “river” by a Greystone Concrete cement mixer.

The first duck to cross the finish line at Orange Street wins $1,000, second place $500 and third place finish is $250. Even the last duck to cross the finish line wins $100. There will be an additional drawing with one lucky winner receiving free “Chick-fil-A for a year,” a set of 52 meal tickets. Winners of the prizes do not have to be present to win.

In Henderson, tickets are on sale at EZ Car Care, Henderson-Vance Chamber of Commerce and State Employees Credit Union. All Smart Start staff and board members also have tickets, please call (252) 433-9110.

Tickets will also be on sale the day of the race. Ducks are $5 each, a “Quack Pack” of 6 tickets is $25 and a “Flock” of 25 tickets is available for $100.

Sponsors include:

Super Duck: Duke Energy, Union Bank, Granville Medical Center, Boyd & Royster Funeral Services

Top Duck: Charles Boyd Chevrolet and Cardinal Innovations

Feathered Friends: Henderson Family Dentistry, United Healthcare, Wester Realty, Greystone Concrete, City of Henderson, Chick-fil-A and Rose Oil Co.

To hear Daeke’s interview in its entirety, please click the play button below. Listen live to WIZS’ Town Talk Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on 1450AM, 100.1 FM or online at

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