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Cheese Quacker

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The first new “CelebriDuck” rubber duck of 2006 is a tribute to the State of Wisconsin. “Cheese Quacker” duck sports a gold cheese hat and flowing green scarf. This particular CelebriDuck was designed by Jon and Kathy Wright of Wayzata, Minnesota.

The “Border Battle” hits close to the nest for Jon and Kathy Wright

He is from the Iron Range of Minnesota. She is from the Brewery Belt of Wisconsin. His favorite colors include maroon or purple with gold. She prefers green and gold or red and white. Although Kathy isn't the worlds most avid sports fan she does tend to gloat a little when one of her home state teams beats one of Jon's teams. He is more than happy to return the barbs when the score is reversed. Sometimes this rivalry goes beyond sports when they discuss everything from which state has the best roads, best fishing or even restaurants.

So how did this Wayzata, Minnesota couple deal with some of their interstate rivalries? They came up with a design for a rubber duck. Not just any rubber duck, but a Wisconsin rubber duck complete with gold cheese hat and green scarf. “Although I sort of feel like I defected to the other side, I am happy we are honoring Kathy's home state with our new “Cheese Quacker” rubber duck”, said Jon, “just as long as our next design can be a Minnesota rubber duck”.

Jon spoke to CelebriDucks about the possibility of doing “state” ducks. After all, nearly every state has unique icons and features not shared with their neighbors. The first example to pop out of his mouth was a Wisconsin cheese hat duck. They went on to discuss some other possibilities and eventually the conversation came to an end. Jon turned to his wife, Kathy and told her that he thought he might just have a good idea. She agreed that they should call the company back to let him know that they wanted to look at the concept in more detail. Eventually they worked out the fine points and the project started to take shape.

That night Jon could hardly sleep because of thinking about this crazy new venture and how Kathy and he might actually make it happen. “Sometime in the wee hours I nudged her and said, don't let me forget Cheese N' Quackers”. The next morning the duck was officially named, “Cheese Quacker”. From there he headed to the drawing board intent on creating the new Wisconsin rubber duck.

After scanning the drawings they were emailed to CelebriDucks, who then created the first clay rendition. “It was very impressive and our spirits were soaring at that point”, said Kathy. From clay concept to wax floating model was quite a bumpy ride. For months they agonized over eleven different modifications of wax samples before they got the duck to not only look good, but to float upright. “I was stubborn, the artists were stubborn and Craig at CelebriDucks was left smack dab in the middle as moderator, cultural liaison and referee” Jon said. The quality of this new rubber duck is the result of the efforts of many people.

Jon and Kathy knew that stepping out of their photography and art career path to try something completely different was bound to cause some major surprises. The two biggest obstacles included concerns about how slowly the wheels turn from concept to delivery and how complicated the legal aspects of copyright and design patent can become. They say they have gotten quite an education during this whole project.

Kathy and Jon are hoping that “Cheese Quacker” will be enjoyed by everyone, not just the residents of the state of Wisconsin. They are extremely proud to launch this unique collectable rubber duck and have it as part of the CelebriDucks line.

Lean more about Kathy and Jon at artbyjon.com