A Fowl Affair

This Saturday is the unveiling of the new splash pad in Centennial Park. While the water will only be turned on for that one day between 1-4 pm before it’s turned off for fall, it will certainly be a nice addition to the park when the weather becomes warm again. It will be a great place to cool off and splash around!

Of course, there are some other inhabitants of the park who enjoy splashing around too! Residents of the city fondly refer to Centennial Park as Duck Park because of the multitudes of ducks and geese that inhabit the pond in the northeast corner of the park. And just last year some citizens were concerned the population would suffer when the pond was drained for cleaning and reshaping. But the ducks weren’t interested in ceding their territory and quickly returned once the pond was refilled. But the concerns of 2016 were the opposite of those held 28 years ago.

In the fall of 1989 the city hosted a….unique animal adoption program. With the population of ducks and geese overwhelming the pond, which was built for only around 50 ducks, the city held a giveaway. People could come and adopt ducks or geese in pairs to help alleviate the problems caused by overpopulation. And if not enough people wanted to take the fowl? The city planned to sell them to a duck trader. Duck traders traveled across the country buying and selling ducks. Fortunately for our feathered friends, there were so many people willing to adopt that a duck trader wasn’t needed in the end. While local residents were given preference, apparently even people as far as Pueblo, Rye, and Eads showed an interest.

It was certainly a unique way of solving the problem and appeared quite popular! If you have any stories to share about this event feel free to leave us a comment! We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Do you have any unique stories of your own to share? Visit us at the museum Wednesday through Saturday between the hours of 10 am-4 pm!


The information presented in this article is compiled using research conducted by the Royal Gorge Regional Museum and History Center.

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