The Mullingar Chamber of Commerce, in association with Westmeath County Council and Waterways Ireland, are hosting Mullingar’s first ever Royal Duck Derby, to celebrate the wonderful works carried out on the canal over the past number of years.
After a 36-year restoration project, various celebrations are happening around the country to mark the re-opening of the Royal Canal from Dublin all the way to Clondra, Co Longford.
To mark the occasion a number of bodies have committed to organise various different events along the Canal at Harbour Bridge in Mullingar, beginning at 2pm this Sunday October10, for a fun family day out.
Confirmed events include, a Royal Duck Derby, walking tours with local historian Ruth Illingworth, archery, fishing demonstrations, canoe polo, sub aqua demonstrations, zorb balls (which allow people to walk on water without getting wet ), face painting, live music, food fair, and a closing ceremony with a spectacular fireworks display at sun down.
The highlight of the day will be the Royal Duck Derby at 5pm. It is hoped to have over 2000 rubber ducks race (sail ) down the canal at Harbour Bridge, with prizes for the first 10 duckies home.
Ducks can be purchased for only €5 in a number of outlets around the town and while a diet of healthy eating and some natural nutritional supplements are encouraged, the Duck Race committee will forfeit any ducks that have been mechanically (or genetically ) altered.
They would most certainly encourage well-dressed little duckies. Perfectly acceptable accoutrements for your duck would include painted feathers, ribbons, crocheted hats, flags, jewels etc.
All ducks must be brought to the Harbour Bridge before 1pm on the big day or returned to your duck seller any day before the race.
Keep an eye on the chamber website, www.mullingarchamber.ie for more information. Current duckie stockists include: Rochforts, Fagan’s, Ilia Gourmet, Buckley’s Supervalu, and Texaco Robinstown, and the chamber office.
Ducks can also be purchased in Harbour Place Shopping Centre between 11am and 4pm on Saturday.