Banquet about more than just ducks

Tyler
Tyler Clarke
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Prince Albert Ducks Unlimited president Terry Lysyk and national manager of special projects Keith Mackintosh, from left, are seen while the 32nd Annual Prince Albert Ducks Unlimited Banquet is being set up on Saturday. 

Those packing the Exhibition Centre full on Saturday were supporting more than ducks, Ducks Unlimited national manager of special projects Keith Mackintosh said.

 

“It’s not just for ducks,” he said while guests began arriving for Saturday’s banquet. “People think it’s just about ducks -- it’s not just about the ducks.

Although ducks are an important part, the key goal behind Ducks Unlimited is with the preservation of wetlands, he clarified.

“Wetlands are a natural filter for groundwater and it’s a natural habitat,” he said, adding that areas with more wetlands are less likely to flood, with wetlands serving as a giant water sponge.

“There’s about 50 different projects going on within a 25-kilometre radius of (Prince Albert),” local chapter president Terry Lysyk said. “You’ll see a lot of those while you’re driving along the highway -- you’ll see a “Ducks Unlimited” sign by a slough or a pond.

“If you go out further about 100 kilometres there are probably more like 200 projects.”

These projects and others like it throughout the province are overseen by a handful of staff and more than 600 volunteers.

Ducks Unlimited has about 1,000 quarters of land in Saskatchewan, making it one of the province’s largest holders of land, Lysyk said.

People think it’s just about ducks -- it’s not just about the ducks. Keith Mackintosh

Although the final numbers from Saturday’s banquet had yet to be figured out by press time on Sunday, Lysyk said that early projections see them going over the $50,000 mark.

“It was beyond my expectations,” he concluded.

All money raised at the 32nd annual banquet stays within the province, Mackintosh said.

“All of the money raise at fundraising events can be matched through different government grants that we can apply for, so every dollar we raise today is about two to one,” he said at Saturday’s event.

“As far as the fundraising side, it’s hard to match what they do in P.A.

“They run on the moniker that they run the best party in P.A., and they do. The fundraising side as far as the dollars we raise is just a byproduct of the fun we’re having tonight, so that’s, to me, is the message.

“If you’ve never been to a Ducks Unlimited dinner in P.A., you’ve got to come next year because it’s a lot of fun.”

Organizations: Ducks Unlimited, Prince Albert

Geographic location: Saskatchewan, P.A.

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