Dragon Boat Festival happening today

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 30, 2016

By Amanda Raymond

SALISBURY — The Rowan County Chamber of Commerce’s Third Annual Dragon Boat Festival is happening today.

The festival will be at The Shrine Club on High Rock Lake, 6480 Long Ferry Road, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

More than 3,000 people are expected to come out and watch 25 teams race across the lake.

“The Rowan Chamber is excited to bring this fun event back to our community for the third year,” said Ann Pressly of Trinity Oaks and chair of the Dragon Boat Festival Committee, in a press release. “It highlights our quality of life with abundant water resources, friendly people and unique team building opportunities for businesses!”

Dragon Boat racing is a tradition that dates back to more than 2,300 years ago in ancient China. The 45-foot boats are decorated with dragon heads, tails and scales.

The chamber is contracting with High Five Dragon Boat for the third year in a row to provide the boats, paddles and life vests for the event.

The event is free to attend. Parking, which is also free, will be available at Trading Ford Baptist Church at 3600 Long Ferry Rod and in adjacent lots to the Shrine Club. The Salisbury/Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau will be providing trolley rides to and from parking areas.

Along with the Dragon Boat races, there will be food vendors, Cheerwine, United Beverages/Miller Beer, and craft beer products from New Sarum Brewery.

Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets, but pets, coolers and outside food are not allowed.

Novant Health Rowan Medical Center will be presenting the Second Annual Corporate Cup for employee wellness programs during the event’s lunch break. Hitachi Metals was the winner in 2015. There will also be a Heads & Tails game and the Drummer Parade with prizes for best costume during the break.

Olympic-style gold, silver and bronze medals will be presented in the top three divisions and gold will be presented in the fourth division.

The title sponsors for the event are Novant Health Rowan Medical Center and Trinity Oaks/Lutheran Services Carolinas.

For more information, contact the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce at 704-633-4221, info@rowanchamber.com or www.rowanchamberdragonboat.com.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.