This article isn’t about how Craig Wolfe created a multimillion-dollar business called Celebriducks out of a unique, possibly drunken idea. You can read about that here, here, or here. Instead, it’s a story about how Craig’s journey took him to Lake County, a quiet, rural location, far from the bustle of the city. It’s a story about sunsets and long summer evenings. And it’s a story about how Craig continues to innovate, even though he’s already achieved immeasurable success.
Picture this: It’s early evening, late spring. Between the emerald blue sky, popcorn clouds puff into the distance, building in thicker clumps as they bump into the Mayacamas Mountains. Below them sits Clear Lake, flecked with the smallest specks of whitecaps. The mountains rise from the lake in a motley assortment of greens and tans that blend into grey-violet as they back into the distance.
“I’ve got a friend who has a place in Lake Geneva,” Craig says, “and she sent me some photos of the view. I said, ‘That’s a great view. Now look at ours.’ And I sent her photos of the view from my deck. ‘Wow,’ was all she said. I mean, the view here is drop-dead gorgeous. All those places have got nothing on Lake County.
I feel like we’re on vacation 24/7,” he says, a smile in his voice. “It doesn’t seem like I’m working with a view like this one.”
But that’s not entirely true. In fact, Craig has been hard at work, developing a new line of ducks called Good Ducks, which are in fact the only rubber ducks that are 100% made in the USA. “You know, the funny thing is that I own this business one hundred percent,” Craig says. “I never took an investor. I don’t like being told what to do. I knew who I was and what I could do, and it’s a fortuitous thing that it’s turned out this way. Because if I had to report to a board, they probably wouldn’t have let me do this. They would think it was too much risk, too much of an expense. We had to find a whole new way of molding the ducks using food and medical grade materials to make the safest rubber ducks in the world for teething babies. But we’re going to end up selling tens of thousands of them.” He pauses. “And we’ll sell millions of them if we do it right. It’s a better mousetrap, and definitely a safer one from what’s currenty out there.
“The reason we do Good Ducks,” Craig continues, “is because people go out and buy a latex duck for their child and they don’t realize that latex allergies can happen in children if they’re repeatedly exposed to it. You also don’t want a baby to be chewing on toxic chemicals. That’s why we made our Good Ducks without PVC, BPA, phythalates, or latex. Remember babies chew on these things all day long.”
Meanwhile, the sunset trickles into purple-black, and the wind dies down. Pelicans stand out in a white line against the darkening day, heading home for the evening. Their wings reach wide across the water, barely flicking the lake with their wingtips.
“It’s just extraordinary here,” Craig muses as the images flick across his mind. “Rainbows. . . sunrises. . . the moon glowing on the water. . .the Milky Way. . .clouds like I have never seen. It truly is what we call ‘Lake TV.’” He continues. “D and I sit there for endless time just doing nothing, just chatting, having some tea, and looking out at this breathtaking display. It’s a good place to finish things up.”
Then Craig moves into a new thought. I am really proud that we were able to find a way to make our Good Ducks entirely in the U. S. There are just so many issues with products coming in from overseas right that have all kinds of safety issues. Now more than ever, it is our moment to get the story out there. I know that most people know us for our celebrity rubber duck line of all these famous rubber ducks that were even voted one of the top 100 Gifts by Entertainment Weekly. But wow, how cool, it would be to be more remembered for creating something that every new baby around the world woud have as their first tub toy.”Then he pauses for a moment. “The weather? Did I mention the weather here?”
You can purchase a Good Duck at the Celebriducks website.