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One of the oldest attractions at the Ozark Empire Fair is the Lions Club Duck Pond, which is celebrating a milestone this year. Lions Club member Jim Schatz says most of the money from the duck pond helps fund the Springfield Association for the Blind. Some money also goes to medical research.
It took the Lions 53 years to raise $300,000 with the duck pond. In early years, that money came a dime at a time. This year you can try your luck at the duck pond for as little as one dollar. The Lions Club booth centers around an oblong tank, filled with water and little plastic ducks. The ducks circle around the tank, bobbing and spinning. Visitors pay money to scoop a duck up with a small net. Then a Lions Club member takes the duck and announces the number written on the bottom.
In theory, each number corresponds with a specific prize. Jim Schatz and Lion Jerry Young explain. Everyone is a winner at the duck pond, which makes it a favorite for young and old.
Lion Jim Schatz has been working the duck pond for more than 15 years. He says the best part is watching people react to the prizes he selects for them. From The Ozark Empire Fair, I'm Jenny Fillmer for KSMU News.