Fourth Annual Dragon Boat Festival is Saturday
Each team competes in three heats on a 350m straight course.
The fourth annual Rowan Chamber Dragon Boat Festival will be held on Saturday, July 29 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at The Shrine Club on High Rock Lake, 6480 Long Ferry Road.
“The Rowan Chamber is passionate about health and wellness and being a part of an event of this magnitude that brings together family fun and competition, tying it in with High Rock Lake, our natural resource here in Rowan County is a win-win for the community. We have been pleased to be associated with the Dragon Boat Festival for all four years,” said Teresa Dakins (Trinity at Home), chair of the Dragon Boat Festival Committee. “It highlights our quality of life with abundant water resources, friendly people and unique team building opportunities for businesses!”
Dragon Boat racing dates back to a more than 2,300-year-old tradition from ancient China. 45-foot sleek boats adorned with dragon heads, tails and scales seat 20 paddlers. A drummer sits in the bow pounding the drum to the beat of the paddlers’ stroke, and a steersperson stands in the stern guiding the team down the water race course.
More than 25 teams will compete and over 3,000 people are expected to watch. The event is free to attend; however, no pets, coolers or outside food will be allowed.
Besides the actual competition of the colorful Dragon Boat races, food vendors will be joined by Cheerwine; United Beverages/Miller Beer, plus New Sarum Brewery and Morgan Ridge will feature their craft beer products for sale.
Food vendors include Teriyaki “Chicken on a Stick”, Kabobs food truck, The Hotdog Shack, The Shuckin’ Shack, Kay’s Concessions and the Egg Roll Shop. Refreshing treats will also be provided by Dolce Italian Ice and The Chill.
There will be entertainment during the lunch break, with local student dancers leading the Drummer Parade. A fun Heads & Tails 50/50 game will be played during lunch with the winner receiving a cash prize. Raffles for recreation sporting equipment, kayaks and picnic baskets will be conducted.
Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets and make it a fun lake party. Parking is free and available in adjacent lots to the Shrine Club. The Salisbury/Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau will provide trolley rides to and from the parking areas. Look for the signs as you come down Long Ferry Road.
At the end of the day on Saturday, Olympic style gold, silver and bronze medals will be presented in the top three divisions and gold in the fourth division.
The Chamber has contracted with High Five Dragon Boat for the fourth year in a row. High Five provides each team with all the necessary equipment (boat, paddles, life vests). Teams of 20 learn how to paddle during an introductory practice session. On race day, each team competes in three heats on a 350m straight course.
Title Sponsors are Novant Health Rowan Medical Center and Trinity Oaks/Trinity at Home/Lutheran Services of the Carolinas.
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