The rain stopped, the clouds tried to disperse, and folks kept coming to experience the first Granby Grange Rubber Duck Race at Salmon Brook Park on April 29. Co-chairs of the event, the fundraising brainchild of Granby Grange lecturer Judy Doyle, said the race was an awesome success both financially and in terms of spreading goodwill in the community. It is planned for an annual event.
“For this very first race to support Granby Grange, we limited the total number of rubber ducks available to sponsor to just 400,” said Granby Grange executive committee chair Dave Roberts. “We never thought that there would be so much interest in this first race, but we sold out of ducks days before the actual race day.”
“As a 97-year-old community organization, we chose for this first race to donate part of our proceeds to the Granby 4-H,” said co-chair Carol Innes. “We are so pleased to help our local youth in the 4-H who share common goals with the Grange.”
The event was hosted at Pavilion #2 at Salmon Brook Park and featured information on the Grange, a bake sale, popcorn and meals to go. At 3 p.m. sharp, Granby Grange president Ron Cowdrey appeared on the pedestrian bridge over Salmon Brook and—following the National Anthem and welcoming remarks— launched the rubber ducks into the rain-swollen brook. Some ducks moved quicker than the judges and the judges had to hurry to beat the first rubber ducks to the finish line, about 1,000 feet from the start of the race. Many volunteers and children got into the water to rescue the rubber ducks before they escaped down river.
Doyle said, “The Grange is a strong supporter of the environment and we wanted to make sure that we rescued every rubber duck launched. After much searching for the last seven ducks, we pulled all 400 ducks from Salmon Brook.”
Following the race, more than 60 attendees went back to the Pavilion where the results were announced and prizes distributed by Cowdrey as follows:
First: Sharyon Holness won a Michael Kors designer purse
Second: Lynda Westbury won a Michael Kors wine case and bottle of wine
Third: Ron Cowdrey won a $100 VISA gift card
Fourth: Karrie VanRyn won an Elite Air Fryer
Fifth: Bill Ross won a $50 Dunkin’ Donuts gift card
Sixth: Casey Janser won a $50 movie gift card
Seventh: Dawn Kelly won a basket of perennials
Eighth: Kathy Morgan won one quart of maple syrup
Ninth: Barbara Healy won a gardening basket
Tenth: Colin Wright won a $15 Jersey Mike’s Subs gift card
Eleventh: Beth Jenkins won three jars of homemade jam
Twelfth: Colin Wright won one dozen local eggs
Last: David Desiderato won a toy Monster Truck
Granby Grange was last reorganized in 1926 and was on the verge of closing during the pandemic. Following a membership reinvigoration campaign, 31 new members have joined the Granby Grange and all officer and committee positions are filled for the first time in many years. For more information on Granby Grange, please contact membership committee chair Carol Innes at firstname.lastname@example.org or 860-205-0162.