Everybody wins at Whaling Days 2002

DeWayne Jessie, more famously known as Otis Day, gets a little bit softer as he and the Knights perform their signature song “Shout.” - Photo by Rogerick Anas
DeWayne Jessie, more famously known as Otis Day, gets a little bit softer as he and the Knights perform their signature song “Shout.”
— image credit: Photo by Rogerick Anas

This weekend Rich Arper’s luck changed when his duck charged toward the shore taking first place in the Great Kitsap Duck Race.

“I don’t even know anyone who won anything,” in the race he said Monday.

It’s a running joke in his family that when it comes to Lotto tickets, raffles and such, he doesn’t have any luck.

Now he’s got a 2002 Toyota Tacoma 4X4 truck.

“It’s so unexpected. We would have been happy to win anything,” Arper said. The Chico resident is not sure what he’s going to do with the truck and is a little unsure that he even won it.

“I haven’t received any official notification,” he said.

Although Arper has never won a thing in the nine years the race has been run he is familiar with all aspects of the event. The ducky dash has become somewhat of a family tradition.

Arper’s dad Robert Sr. is the most tenured member of the Silverdale Rotary and helped get the duck race going. Arper remembers many a year helping with the race and buying ducks each year. He would buy five -- one for each person in the family.

This year was different.

The low tides delaying the 3 p.m. start time. The duck-toting boat was stuck on dry land for about two hours. The Arpers left Whaling Days to watch their daughter in her final performance in C-STOCK’s musical “Music Man Jr.”

This was the first year the senior Arper did not attend the duck race. Arper said he dutifully bought the five ducks from his dad, but put his name on all the slips.

Change in routine seemed to be the theme for the 2002 Whaling Days held in Old Town Silverdale this weekend.

Extra security at the pier and crackdowns on underage drinking worked wonders this year, festival officials said this year.

Sgt. Jim White with the Kitsap County Sheriff’s office said nine open container citations were issued and each night a few rowdy people were escorted out of Whaling Days. Other than that he said the beefed up security was a success.

“People were commenting it was more clam than in recent years,” White said.

“It went pretty smoothly,” he said.

Underage drinkers he said migrated out of the Whaling Days festival and were found in other parts of Silverdale during a sweep of local businesses.

“Revenue wise I know we did well,” said Whaling Days director Vickie Garrison. Although the crowd was a little light on Sunday, it was also cooperative when it came to following the rules.

“We didn’t have mounds of trash at the end of the dock,” she said Monday.

They did have the largest street fair ever and great entertainment an exhausted Garrison said.

“We try to be diverse with the music selection,” she said noting the Seattle Band Maktub was a crowd pleaser.

“Our headliners delivered,” she said.

Planning for next year’s festival begins next week as Whaling Days committee members give a recap and suggest improvements at the next meeting.

“We are definitely looking for people to help out,” she said.

For information about meetings and to volunteer contact Garrison at

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