FloydWinning Duck2015

Daniel Sowers, owner of On The Water In Floyd, holds up the winning duck in a prior year’s Floyd Rubber Duck Race, as volunteers wait to retrieve other ducks from the river after the ducks cross the finish line. The event is a fundraiser for the Floyd County Chamber of Commerce.

Hundreds of rubber ducks will float down the Little River during this year’s Floyd Rubber Duck Race on Saturday, Aug. 24, at On The Water In Floyd. The top prize for the duck that crosses the finish line first is $300, with second place receiving $200 and third place receiving $100.

Tickets for a numbered duck can be purchased for $5 each. The event is a Floyd County Chamber of Commerce fundraiser that supports Floyd Visitor Center operations.

The duck drop at the bridge over the Little River at the intersection of Slusher Store and Thunderstruck Road is at 1:30 p.m. The race course is a little under a half-mile long, ending near Thunderstruck and Sowers Road.

“No duck will be left behind,” said Shep Nance, a chamber board member who serves on the event’s steering committee. “Volunteers working with On The Water, one of our presenting sponsors, will retrieve the ducks after they cross the finish line along with any that get snagged along the river bank.”

This year’s duck race will have a special 50 Years of Love theme. Floyd has partnered with Virginia Tourism Corporation through a grant to celebrate the golden anniversary of the “Virginia is for Lovers” slogan and logo with special events and promotions in Floyd. For example, the duck race will feature 1969 summertime music presented by local DJ Linda DeVito. Attendees will also have the opportunity for some fun 1969-themed photo booth opportunities and receive free 50 Years of Love goodies.

The duck race will again be utilizing Sustain Floyd’s Voltzwagon, which will provide solar power for the music. Children’s activities and grilled hot dogs and hamburgers will be offered again too.

“We want to continue to have a family-friendly lunchtime event along the river,” said Nance. “On The Water’s site is a great, accessible venue for watching the race and then enjoying a good meal with some music and fun activities with family and friends, including a swim or float down the river.” The June Bug Center for Arts and Education is providing face-painting this year.

Day starts with annual cleanup

Floyd County’s Little River Cleanup Day will take place at the same location from 8 a.m. to noon. (Sign-ups closed prior to press time.) The 2019 ReNew The New event encompasses river cleanups in each county in the New River Valley; the Little River is part of the New River watershed. Planning and operational support for the Little River Cleanup Day event is provided by Floyd County, the town of Floyd and On The Water, as well as the New River Valley Regional Commission.

During the last Little River Cleanup Day, 56 volunteers worked with about 40 people comprising On The Water staff, town of Floyd employees and council members and Floyd County employees to clean 9.9 miles of water and 3.5 miles of land. As a result of their hard work, they collected 340 pounds of trash, 86 car tires, one tractor tire, five truck tires and one truck wheel that weighed 100 pounds.

Volunteers who participate in the cleanup can take advantage of a special two-for-one duck ticket sales offer upon completing their shift and showing their related wristbands.

In addition to the presenting sponsors, event supporters include Citizens, Edward Jones, Floyd Farm Bureau, Floyd Press, New Mountain Mercantile, Phoenix Hardwoods, Residential Mortgage Services, Skyline National Bank, T & E Small Engine, Thomas and Wall, and Turman Log Homes.

Duck tickets can be purchased in person at the Floyd Visitor Center and chamber office at 109 E. Main St., across from the courthouse building. Tickets may also be purchased online at www.floydchamber.org, or at the event from noon to 1:15 p.m. Chamber board members are also selling tickets.

For more information, call 745-4407 or email info@floydchamber.org.

Submitted by John McEnhill

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