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The Duck Walk at The Peabody in Orlando - International Driv
Panama Cruise January 2011 - Last Trans-canal trip planned for the Disney Wonder at this time.
Unless you know the story, the Duck Walk sounds like an awfully mundane experience... here is the legend from the back of the napkin at the bar:
How did the tradition of the ducks in The Peabody fountain begin?
Back in the 1930's Frank Schutt, General Manager of The Peabody, and a friend, Chip Barwick, returned from a weekend hunting trip to Arkansas. The men had a little too much Tennessee sippin' whiskey and thought it would be funny to place some of their live decoy ducks (it was legal then for hunters to use live decoys) in the beautiful Peabody fountain.
Three small English call ducks were selected as "guinea pigs," and the reaction was nothing short of enthusiastic. Thus began a Peabody tradition which was to become internationally famous.
To this day, the Duck Master of The Peabody marches the ducks in to the Duck Fountain in the morning and back out to their home at 5:00 each evening.
On Wednesday, January 5, 2011 we managed to finally catch the show, but at a small cost. The garage offers complementary parking if you are there less than 30 minutes, so arrive at 4:45 to get in and out for free. Once you walk around to the lobby entrance, consult the digital maps located throughout the lobby for the Duck Fountain... it is on the same floor you are on if you come in the main entrance. Find the bar at the fountain and sit on the south side where the red carpet is located... this is where the ducks arrive and depart. If you are arriving for the 5:00 walk, you will see the ducks already swimming in the fountain.
On the day we were there, one duck seemed to be a bit impatient with time and decided to jump off the fountain and walk to the elevator. Once he was there, the button was obviously too high so it just waited until the Duck Master tracked him down with and entourage of kids, herding the anxious duck back to the fountain.
You can see in the video that the Duck Master lowers the stairs for the duck to get back on the fountain.
The funniest part was the second duck that seemed upset that one of the other ducks had disappeared. He went about 20 feet down the carpet and raised such a fuss.
At 5:00, two honorary Duck Masters helped heard the line of ducks down the stairs, along the red carpet and into the elevator.
Even though it may sound strange, observing this time honored ceremony is a piece of history everyone should watch. It is a lot of fun.
2011 Disney Wonder Panama Canal Cruise Index
Daily Navigator/Iwa Published Schedule