PHOTOS: Maplewood Celebrates & Honors Memory of Duck Race Founders

0 FacebookTwitterPinterestEmail

Maplewood’s beloved Memorial Day Duck Race returned Monday under bright skies, attracting throngs of rubber ducky enthusiasts and raising funds for important community work.

The race also honored the memory of its founders.

“This year’s race was held in memory of Charlie Gianni who sadly passed away in April,” said James Goodger, South Mountain YMCA District Executive Director. “Charlie and Ellie Gianni’s Duck Race enthusiasm and joy will always be with us in spirit on this special day that they brought to Maplewood.”

A photo of Charlie and Ellie Gianni among the ducks

The Duck Race brings staff, volunteers, township leaders, and the community together for a fun family experience and great cause. Proceeds go toward the Y’s financial assistance program, which helps make Y programs like summer camp, sports, arts, and child care affordable for families with extenuating circumstances.

Last year, MEND was awarded the Ellie Gianni Community Impact Grant. This year, the Y will rename the grant the Ellie & Charlie Gianni Community Impact Grant. Each year, an outside panel selects, based on applications received, a qualifying local nonprofit to receive 20%, up to $5,000 of the net proceeds, in the memory of Ellie and Charlie who brought this event to the river in Memorial Park.

“My family is so grateful to have this impact grant named for my mom and dad. They would be so honored to know that their memories are living on in the good that others are doing for the community,” said Claire Gianni Sinclair.

Donate here.

Photos by Claire Gianni Sinclair:

Related Articles