Cruising Ducks

GameNightBlog goes on vacation, and we’re taking a flock of ducks with us.


We have returned from our epic Alaskan Cruise / Pacific Northwest roadtrip. We hid all 51 ducks and we know that they all got found by someone. We have received responses from a few of the Finders, but we will give it another week so some more people to reach out to us before we draw the winner of the contest. Stay tuned…

Here at GameNightBlog we are just a family of four who loves to play games and infrequently write about them. But what we are really all about is having fun with friends and family. Another fun thing we love to do is to travel with said family. Our world is the most amazing gift, filled with beautiful vistas, stunning monuments, and gloriously diverse cultures. And we want to see them all. Who needs a 401K or a retirement plan when there’s so much to explore and discover?

Usually, we take absolutely ridiculous road trips. We are the Griswolds from the Chevy Chase Vacation movies. We have taken road trips out to Mount Rushmore, down the Pacific Coast Highway, and through the heartland of America to the bayous of New Orleans. We’ve seen amber waves of grain, purple mountains’ majesty and two World’s Biggest Balls of Twine (officially there are 4)!

Griswold Family Truckster
Here we are on our trip to Rushmore in front of the classic Queen Family Truckster.

A few years ago, to mix things up, we took our first cruise to celebrate the Grandparent’s 50th Wedding Anniversary (it was also our 20th, but nobody cared about that). We took a Carnival Cruise out of Tampa to sail the Caribbean. We had a blast! We swam with dolphins in the Grand Caymans, got overrun by monkeys in Guatemala, explored Mayan ruins in Belize, and chilled on beach in Mexico. But our most unique discovery was finding this little rubber ducky on our cruise ship.

First Crusing Duck
Our very first duck. Thanks to the Ulam family for giving us something new to obsess over.

James, our eagle-eyed traveler, found this little guy hiding in a random planter during one of our 8 million excursions to the free soft-serve ice cream machine. So, this is a thing, and apparently, it’s a pretty, big thing. What started as a cute idea by a young girl named Abby has become a whole movement where families from across the globe are hiding rubber ducks all over cruise ships around the world. It’s a fun, little scavenger hunt that you don’t even know you are playing until you find one. For more details about the official cruising ducks they have a Website,; Instagram page, #cruisingducks; and a Facebook Group. Just like us, but more popular.

Cruising Ducks Facebook
Maybe someday my Facebook Group will have 112.5K members. Right now, I’m at 56 (total!)

James was so excited when he found his duck, that it was one of the highlights of the entire trip. Selflessly, he wanted someone else to have the joy of finding a duck, so he didn’t keep his duck and re-hid it on the ship. James bid a fond adieu to Phillip (James renames every animal he encounters, whether real or not) as he placed it on one of the porthole window seats at the bow of the boat.

For this year’s excursion in 2022, we are doing a “short” Pacific Northwest road trip and a 7-day Alaskan cruise. I told you we were the Griswolds; weekend trips to the cape are for wimps. While we were working out the details of the trip, James only had one question, “We’re bringing ducks, right?” Well, we are now!

51 Ducks
That’s a lotta ducks!

So, here’s the deal. We are travelling on the Holland America Westerdam out of Seattle, Washington to Alaska on July 17, 2022. And we’re packing 50 ducks (actually 51!) with us. We hope they are all found, and we are bursting with anticipation to learn where they all end up. We wish that we had a way to track and display the results. If only we had website or something. Wait a minute…We do own a website. Who cares that this isn’t game related, it’s still fun and that’s all that matters.

Each duck has a card that will instruct the new owners how to reach us and share their discovery. To further incentivize the lucky vacationers, we’ll have a little contest. After the vacation, we’ll pull a random name and award that lucky duck a free game. I’ll definitely give away a copy of Ticket to Ride, which is our favorite family game, and is about travelling the country to boot! But if I get enough entries (30), I’ll spring for a copy of Ticket to Ride: Rails & Sails, because that one has cruise ships in it as well.

Look, I know this game is about trains, but you do get to travel around the country, so I tell you it fits with the theme.

Technically, this contest is only open to fellow passengers on the Holland America cruise to Alaska. Now, I’m not suggesting that you run out and book a cruise on the Westerdam for July 17 just to win a copy of Ticket to Ride. Although, that would be awesome, and we could play some games. Legally, I’m probably required to say that this contest is not affiliated with or sponsored by Holland America or Days of Wonder. I also receive no compensation from any of these companies.

To enter, just find one of our ducks, then leave a comment on this webpage or send an email to . In the message, leave your name and hometown (no addresses) so I can track the duck’s journey. Include the name of the duck (written on the back of the card) just so I know which duck you found. If you really want to share the experience, you can tag your discovery on Instagram @gamenightblogger and #cruisingducks. Happy Duck Hunting!

As this webpage evolves, I’ll post the results of the contest and include a map with the final destinations of all the cruising ducks. And for those who follow us on Instagram @gamenightblogger, we still have our mascot, Verne the Travelling Meeple, so we’ll post some pictures from the trip as well.

Verne Game Wall
Verne (the big red meeple in the middle) has been calmly chilling on our Game Wall waiting for his next adventure.

As always, Bon Voyage, and Game On!

There ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them. – Mark Twain


us-map-color-borders raw
The first pin on the map will be at Winthrop, Massachusetts (near Boston). ‘Cause that’s where we live.




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