Pink Paddles Win Division
The Pink Paddles Dragon Boat Team had a great time competing in the 3rd Annual Northshore Dragon Boat Festival over the weekend. There were a total of 24 teams racing and Pink Paddles took 7th overall and first in their division. You can view all of the race results at the Dragon Boat Website.
Dragon Boat Racing is a fun activity that anyone can participate in. There are 22 people on a team with one steersman and one drummer. The drummer sits in the front of the boat facing the paddlers and beats a drum in unison with the pacers in the front of the boat. This person must also remind paddlers to reach forward and needs to be loud so everyone can hear them. The steersperson has the difficult job of keeping the long boat going straight through the race lane. The first year of the event there were a couple of mishaps with boats crashing and dragons drowning, but it looks like most steerspeople have gotten the hang of it. The first six paddlers are called Pacers, the next eight are the Engine Room, and then the Rockets are last.
The most important thing to keep in mind when paddling in a Dragon Boat is to paddle together. Everyone must keep their head up and eyes forward to stay in sync with the rest of the paddlers. Counting or yelling out loud helps to keep teams together, and is the reason I have no voice.
The Festival itself is alot of fun. There’s a parade of teams, an opening ceremony, the races, vendors, the awards ceremony, food, fun, music and more. I recommend getting a team together and trying it for yourself. Once you paddle you’re likely to catch the Dragon Fever and want to do it again and again, I know I sure did.