Clinton Street Bridge Raffle offers unique opportunity in Defiance
It’s an opportunity to close out an era or start a new one!

The Defiance Development and Visitors Bureau (DDVB) is raffling off chances to be the last person to drive across the Clinton Street Bridge or first person to go across the new bridge. Tickets are $10 each and are available at the DDVB and Defiance City Hall building. Organizers urge individuals to buy their tickets quickly to be part of the city’s history as there are only 1,000 tickets available.

The first ticket drawn, (that winner) will get the chance to decide if they want to be the last across the bridge or the first across the new bridge. The second ticket drawn will get the option the first winner did not pick. Though not yet finalized, officials have talked about lining up an older car for the winner to drive across the bridge when it closes, and a newer one when it opens. However, if the winners don’t want that or those plans can’t be finalized, winners can drive their own vehicles or anything they want across the bridge.

The Clinton Street Bridge will be replaced in 2019. There is not yet a set date for the bridge’s closure or when the new bridge will be reopened. However, the Ohio Department of Transportation has estimated the bridge construction to take approximately 8 ½ to 9 ½ months. The new bridge will have sidewalks and a bicycle path on each side along with four vehicle lanes.

The raffle was an idea first proposed by Dawn Ludwig and was going to do it as a fundraiser for the Chamber of Commerce. With Chamber President Darrell Handy retiring at the end of the year, she was too busy to organize the fundraiser, but Kirstie Mack, executive director of the DDVB, took over the organization of the raffle.

The proceeds from the raffle will go toward beatification efforts like the downtown streetscape, flowers in the pots, and the hanging baskets and also extend that across Clinton Street to North Clinton Street.