5th Annual 'Ducky Derby' Returns To Wilson County

The Derby is back! No, not that one.

After the pandemic forced the 2020 event to be canceled, the annual "Ducky Derby" returned to Wilson County for its fifth celebration, News Channel 5 reports. Proceeds for the event go toward the Wilson County Community Help Center.

"This may be the only event that we have this year," said Karen Rudzinski, executive director of the Help Center. "It got canceled last year due to COVID and we're happy to bring it back."

With all the appearance of a typical Derby party, complete with big hats and live music, the Ducky Derby allows players to purchase a duck that gets placed into a pool along with thousands others in the hopes that their lucky duck gets chosen and they win a prize.

While the pandemic has taken its toll on annual events and celebrations, it seems to have brought more people out to this year's Ducky Derby.

"In the past we haven't sold more than maybe 2,000 or 2,500 [ducks]," she said. "We've got about 4,000 that are in the pool at this time."

This year's event, which saw around double the average participation, was expected to bring in between $30,000 and $35,000, according to Tim Leeper, president of the board at the Help Center.

"At the help center we provide several programs — food boxes, clothing, assistance with utilities, prescription drugs, we do Ensure for elderly and for cancer patients, and diapers for our youngest," said Rudzinski.

In addition to the duck draw, the Derby includes a silent auction and an award for the best hat.

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