Given the lower river levels this summer, the annual Winthrop Kiwanis Duck Race on Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 2) may be a somewhat leisurely affair. No matter, the fastest-floating rubber duck – out of hundreds that will be bobbing along the Chewuch and Methow rivers – will pay off handsomely for the lucky ticket-holder.
The race starts at noon from the Highway 20 bridge near the four-way stop, when buckets full of ducks are dumped into the Chewuch. The race ends at the Highway 20 bridge over the Methow River. In between, the ducks must navigate the confluence, low water and exposed rocks.
Duck tickets are $3 each, and can be purchased from any Kiwanis member. Tickets may also be available at Ace Hardware, Methow Valley Thriftway, Hank’s Harvest Foods and the Tenderfoot, and will be on sale in downtown Winthrop Labor Day morning almost right up to race time.
The first-place prize is $500. The second-place duck is worth $200, and third place pays $100.
The race is a Kiwanis fundraiser to support community service projects for Methow Valley children. It is the second-biggest fundraiser for Kiwanis after the Bite of the Methow.