Annual Pawcatuck River Duck Race (Westerly, RI)

Date Of Event: April 30, 2016

Location: 37 Main St, Westerly, Rhode Island

Parking:  Parking was very limited, especially with the huge turnout.  I got there early so I was fortunate enough to snag a 3 hour parking spot near the event in the shopping area of the town.

Cost: Free

Annual Pawcatuck River Duck Race


Every year for the past 18 years, the Ocean Community Chamber of Commerce partners with several businesses and community members to raise money by dumping 20,000 ducks into the Pawcatuck River (don’t worry, they’re rubber ducks) and watching them race down the river.  The event helps raise money for over 40 local schools and other non profit groups in the area.

Visitors to the duck race can buy “sponsor tickets” with a unique number of a duck for $5 a chance.  Duck shaped whistles can also purchased, much to the delight of many spectators and parents.  Vendors and a local radio station also sell items and entertain the visitors.

All 20,000 rubber ducks are dumped into the river from a bulldozer which has been filled with the toys prior to the race.

That’s a lot of ducks!

A short walk from the bridge, in Donahue Park, there are also fun stuff for kids (and even adults who feel young at heart) such as a bouncy house, face painting, balloon shaping and other activities.  There also was a classic car, a ’47 Mac, owned by the parent of Bustah (one of the dogs below).  Cool car.

There were ducks in the water and on land.

Before the race began, a duck, a real duck this time, decided to stop by and see what was going on.


Then, a family of ducks and ducklings swam by.  I feel badly for the little one lagging behind in the last photo.  I feel like that everyday.


This is the Pawcatuck River before the race.


This is the river with 20,000 ducks in it.

Even dogs came out to watch the race.


Bustah is an American Bulldog.  Beautiful markings.  I like how he is intently staring at his dad who is standing behind me to get his attention.


Reggie is a black Lab who is super friendly (but aren’t they all?)

Below is a video of the dunk dumping.  As you can tell by the audio, the crowd was getting antsy and they really got into the whole countdown.

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New England Nomad

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Mr. Wayne

About New England Nomad

Hi I'm Wayne. Welcome to my blog. I am a true New Englander through and through. I love everything about New England. I especially love discovering new places in New England and sharing my experiences with everyone. I tend to focus on the more unique and lesser known places and things in New England on my blog. Oh yeah, and I love dogs. I always try to include at least one dog in each of my blog posts. I discovered my love of photography a couple of years ago. I know, I got a late start. Now, I photograph anything that seems out of the ordinary, interesting, beautiful and/or unique. And I have noticed how every person, place or thing I photograph has a story behind it or him or her. I don't just photograph things or people or animals. I try to get their background, history or as much information as possible to give the subject more context and meaning. It's interesting how one simple photograph can evoke so much. I am currently using a Nikon D3200 "beginner's camera." Even though there are better cameras on the market, and I will upgrade some time, I love how it functions (usually) and it has served me well. The great thing about my blog is you don't have to be from New England, or even like New England to like my blog (although I've never met anyone who doesn't). All you have to like is to see and read about new or interesting places and things. Hopefully, you'll join me on my many adventures in New England! View all posts by New England Nomad

21 responses to “Annual Pawcatuck River Duck Race (Westerly, RI)

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