MAPLEWOOD, NJ - The South Mountain YMCA is getting ready for the Annual Duck Race on Memorial Day - Monday, May 28 - directly following the Memorial Day parade and ceremony.

This Maplewood tradition will be back for its 20th year, with hundreds expected to attend to watch and to cheer their ducks to victory as they bobble down the Rahway River for prizes and bragging rights.

There are six heats planned, with over 600 rubber ducks competing; the first 13 ducks to float across the finish line in each heat win.

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Some of the prizes include: Yankee tickets, a 2 night stay at Great Wolf Lodge, Turtle Back Zoo membership, Mets tickets and plenty of gift certificates to local businesses and restaurants.

Sponsors of the event include Maplewood Rotary Club, The Local Yarn Store, Roman Gourmet, SOMA Book Festival, Village Barber, Suzy Q’s, Eventage, BCB Community Bank, Mona Lisa Framing, and CrossFit.

According to Kate Cestar, Marketing Director for the South Mountain YMCA, proceeds from the Duck Race go to changing children’s lives through financial assistance, summer camp and many youth development programs.

Tickets, which are $5, are available in Maplewood at the South Mountain YMCA (13 Jefferson Ave.) and Maplewood Stationers (171 Maplewood Ave.), and in South Orange at The Local Yarn Store (15 Village Plaza) and Pet Wants (67 South Orange Ave.).

Tickets are also available online at