Close to 700 paddlers—some from as far away as Calgary, Chilliwack, Prince George and Lethbridge—will converge on the city this weekend for the 2013 edition of the Kelowna Dragon Boat Festival.
Twenty-eight teams, including 13 local crews, will test their speed and skills in the waters of Tugboat Bay on Saturday and Sunday at the eighth annual event.
“We’re up from 18 teams last year, so the festival is coming back, people are starting to find out again that we have a good weekend of racing here in Kelowna,” said Ivan Carothers, the Kelowna Dragon Boat Club’s founder and head coach. “There’s be lots of good racing for the paddlers, and exciting racing for the fans to watch.”
Among the new events featured on this year’s program is an out-of-town men’s team competing against the Kelowna men’s dragon boat team.
Racing begins on Saturday at 9:15 p.m., with 250 metre races, followed by the 500-metre distance.
There will also be a 1,000-metre challenge event on Saturday, as well as the Taiko Drummers who will perform at 3 p.m., followed by the Paddlers’ Party at 4 p.m.
On Sunday, racing kicks off at 8 a.m. and will run until about 3 p.m., with awards to be presented following the races in the beer garden.
Sunday’s program will also feature the Breast Cancer Survivor Cup.
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