Lions Club – North Shore Search and Rescue Collaboration Makes 23rd Annual Duck Race a Huge Success

And They’re Off!
Photo – Crane supplied by Tim Dowdall of Dowdall Crane Rental dumps 3500 rubber ducks into the Spanish River at Domtar Mill to begin the 23rd Annual Duck Race.
Photo by Adam Page used with permission.

By Rock Taylor – The dumping of the ducks begins the race, but the event began months earlier when the Espanola Lions Club offered to assist NSSAR with their annual fund raiser that hadn’t been held since 2019. The mission of NSSAR is to be prepared to search and rescue over a huge geographical area when the need arises. The mission of the Lions Club is to serve by raising funds to pour back into the community when financial support is necessary. The Lions had the member numbers to look after the “front” end of the event. 3500 ducks were sorted by numbers, missing ducks, perhaps lost in previous years, were replaced, donations for the race prizes were procured, application was made for the necessary event licence, tickets were printed, and 3500 race-ready ducks were sold off.
We want to thank all the prize donors listed below for their generosity. These past few years haven’t been easy for most of these businesses, but they enthusiastically responded to our requests for donations. Thank you. We also thank RBC, TD, Giant Tiger, Tanner’s, Home Hardware, Canadian Tire, Freshco and the Makers’ Market for allowing us to set up shop and sell duck tickets. This is the key element of the fundraiser, so it was much appreciated. And we want to thank all those who purchased tickets in support of NSSAR. Many openly stated that they did not expect to win and 3,457 were right! So, congratulations to the 43 who did win and well done to all for raising approximately $14,000 plus for NSSAR!
The race itself came off without a hitch. The ducks hit the water at 11:00 and Mother Nature cooperated with light winds, beautiful temperatures, and a dry sky. Thanks to Lion Grant Lewis and team, hamburgers were served to those in attendance at the boat launch/finish line. All the ducks were netted and returned to their bins to await the 24th Annual Lions Club – NSSAR Duck Race. It was a wonderful event, perhaps made all the sweeter because we had to miss two years. Thanks again to all who were involved in any way.

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