SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - Rowan County's first Dragon Boat festival is set to launch on Saturday. The Rowan County Chamber of Commerce is presenting the inaugural Rowan Chamber Dragon Boat Festival on Sat., August 2, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. at The Shrine Club on High Rock Lake (6480 Long Ferry Road, Salisbury, NC).
The event is sponsored by Trinity Oaks; Novant Health Rowan Medical Center & Pinnacle Orthopedics; Wells Fargo Bank; Duke Energy; Brent Parks, CPA; United Beverages; and, Cheerwine.
"The Rowan Chamber is excited to bring this fun event to our community. It highlights our quality of life with abundant water resources, friendly people and unique team building opportunities for businesses!" said Ann Pressly (Trinity Oaks), chair of the Dragon Boat Festival Committee.
There are 20 teams registered and organizers anticipate a crowd of over 800 attendees. The event is free to attend; however, no coolers or pets will be allowed.
There will be music, food and refreshments. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets and make it a fun lake party, according to the press release.
Dragon Boat racing dates back to a more than 2,300 year old tradition from Ancient China. 45' sleek boats donned 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 race course.
High Five Dragon Boat will provide each team with all the necessary equipment (boat, paddles, life vests). Teams will learn how to paddle during an introductory practice session (included in team registration fee). Each team will provide 20 paddlers; a minimum of eight must be female, and a drummer. On race day each team will race in three heats on a 350m straight course.