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Duck Race Descends on Pleasantville This Sunday

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Pleasantville Swim Team
The Pleasantville Swim Team will be holding its first Great Duck Race on Sunday as a way to raise money to help defray expenses for the team.

Don’t be alarmed by the sight of rubber ducks bobbing down Nannyhagen Stream this weekend.

On Sunday, June 10, the Pleasantville Swim Team is hosting its first Great Duck Race to raise money for the squad. Rubber ducks will float down the stream toward the pump house on Lake Street, with the owner of the first duck to cross the finish line receiving an iPad 2. Other prizes include tickets to next month’s Pleasantville Musical Festival.

Another prize will be awarded for best decorated duck.

The idea was the brainchild of swim team trustee Steve Lord, who participated in duck races while living in Vermont. The Pleasantville Swim Team, with more than 100 members and in existence more for than 50 years, is the only squad run by the village through the Recreation Department.

“The swim team has a long history of volunteers that have come in and taken this team to where it is,” said Village Trustee Mindy Berard. “There is a real passion about swimming and such a wonderful sense of community.”

The Pleasantville Swim Team includes children from four to 18 years old. Many of its members have gone on to compete in college.

“We have these incredible athletes in the village,” Berard said. “You have the older kids taking care of the younger kids and the younger kids wanting to be like the older kids.”

The team competes in Division I of the Northern Westchester Swim Conference, arguably the most challenging grouping in the conference. Berard said that in order for the team to remain successful, it requires additional financial support.

“The village can’t provide all the money,” Berard said. “We do fundraisers like selling food at races and selling swim team apparel. The (swim team’s) board came up with this great idea to have the duck race.”

The village spends money on coaches’ salaries and trophies, while the team needs to raise money for all of its other expenses.

Since Pleasantville Day on May 19, ducks have been selling for $5 each or $20 for five. Petro Zorgman, co-chair and president of the swim team’s board, said last week that 260 ducks were already sold and that number is expected to climb leading up to the event.

“It will be a fight to the finish,” Berard said. “No duck will be left behind. This is an exciting event here in Pleasantville. Hopefully it will draw attention to the great spirit of the swim team.”

The race will go off at 11:30 a.m. after the team’s annual clinic, which is scheduled from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Zorgman said organizers are aiming to attract more people and increase public awareness of the team.

“We want to make it a lot of fun,” Zorgman said. “Not a lot of people are aware of the swim team. This will be a fun event for kids.”

For more information, contact Petro Zorgman at 914-769-5248 or visit

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