Lucky ducks float on the Fourth
Slow-moving No Name Creek gets a boost from a city fire hose
Red, white and blue may have been the prevailing colors everywhere else July 4, but in Meinig Park the color was yellow - rubber ducky yellow, to be precise.
The Sandy Mountain Festival, in conjunction with the Sandy Kiwanis Club, hosted the inaugural Ducky Derby at 1 p.m.
Hundreds of people - including many Kiwanis members donning 'ducky' hats - crowded around No Name Creek in Meinig Park to watch approximately 675 miniature rubber ducks 'race' from the bridge near the Dale Nicholls Stage to a gathering pond by the playground.
Normally a slow-moving, low-trickle channel of water, No Name Creek was gushing Tuesday. Kiwanis member, city employee and Mountain Festival committee member Martin Montgomery put a running fire hose in the creek to give it the boost needed to move the ducks downstream.
The derby officially started when Montgomery dumped the ducks into the creek with a bulldozer - an event that had children mesmerized and everyone cheering.
Spectators cheered as the yellow mass moved toward the finish line. Every one of the popular bathtub toys was adopted by a member of the community for $5 and marked with an identification number.
After all the ducks (and spectators) had arrived at the finish area, Sandy Mayor Linda Malone waded into the creek and, using a small fish net, scooped out three ducks at random.
Sandy resident Marie Summerfield received $500 after Malone pulled her 'lucky duck' - no. 828 - from the creek first. Kiwanis President Les Geren's duck - no. 125 - came in second, netting him $250. Duck no. 494, belonging to Jim Everett, came in third. He won $100.
The 675 or so ducks raised approximately $3,375 for the groups. The Mountain Festival and the Kiwanis Club will split the proceeds after they deduct operating costs.
Ducky Derby organizers, pleased with the outcome of the first-ever event, are exploring the possibility of hosting another derby sometime in the summer or fall.