Dragon Boat Races in California

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Dragon Boat Races

There are over 900 members in the California Dragon Boat Association cdba.org and many competitors and participants.  From young to old, all ages can participate in the exciting water sport. All you need is a dragon boat.

Dragon Boating-  For racing events, dragon boats are always rigged with decorative Chinese dragon heads and tails and are required to carry a large drum aboard. At other times the decorative regalia is usually removed, although the drum often remains aboard for training purposes. The most common competition includes 20 paddlers per dragon boat that has a drummer and a steers person. The goal is simple: paddle to cross the finish faster than the competition. It's a team sport in its purest form that  encompasses the elements of power, speed, synchronization and endurance. The popularity comes from the fact that the sport can accommodate a wide spectrum of skill levels ranging from novice to competitive. Youth dragon boat races and teams over age 70 compete. It's great fun, even if you don't win.

CASTAIC: Castaic Lake Dragon Boat Festival June 8, 2019
Castaic Lake
32132 Castaic Lake Drive
Castaic, CA 91384
castaiclakedragonboat.com
Held in cooperation with the County of Los Angeles Parks and Recreation and 5th District Los Angeles Supervisor
the event includes Boy Scout Troop 609 Chris Sorensen, Scoutmaster
National Anthem Singer and Emcee Patti Cruz
Traditional Opening Ceremony and Lion Dance This
Opening, complete with VIP dotting eyes and feeding the lions
Lion Dance and martial arts demonstration
Iron Fist SCV Martial Arts
Light saber martial arts and traditional martial arts ​​
Ballet Folklórico Aztlan de CSUN
Kalakeke Pacific Island Dance Company
REMO Drum
Vendors Kona Ice | Chyll Rolled Creamery | It's a Grind | Juice it | Hungry Belly Thai | White Rabbit Fillipino Fusion | A Fillipino and Mexican food fusion | REMO Drum | Dragon Alliance Eyewear | Massage Envy | Hypervolt
There will also be festival stickers on sale for $3 each.

SAN DIEGO: San Diego International Dragon Boat Race September 28-29, 2019
Mission Bay, San Diego, CA. sddragonboatrace.com
20 team races
Parking is FREE for all teams at Tecolote Shores North (Mission Bay Park). There are four public parking lots, with parking spaces available along E. Mission Bay Drive. Additional parking is also available 1/4 mile away at the fenced dirt lot near Fiesta Island (see map at right). Paddlers staying at the Hilton Resort can leave their vehicles at the hotel and walk over to the race site.

LONG BEACH: Long Beach Dragon Boat Festival  July 27-28, 2019
Time: 10 a.m.
 Marine Stadium, Long Beach, CA  lbdragonboat.com
Long Beach Dragon Boat Festival : in addition to hosting one of the largest dragon boat competitions in California, there will be Chinese traditional art demonstrations, Chinese Acrobats, traditional dance, hip hop, music and martial arts performances. Come join the fun, food and excitement. Time: 10 a.m.  Marine Stadium, Long Beach, CA.

IRWINDALE: Los Angeles Dragon Boat Races October 5, 2019
The LA Dragon Boat Festival will be held at Santa Fe Dam Rec Area, Irwindale, CA. lacountydragonboatfestival.com

OAKLAND: Northern California International Dragon Boat Festival Lake Merritt September 28-29, 2019, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
 San Francisco sfdragonboat.com
Lake Merritt, Oakland, CA
Said to be the largest dragon boat festival in the U.S., in addition to dragon boat races, the event includes vendors, foods, kids activities and entertainment all day. The California Dragon Boat Association has chosen a new location on Oakland's Lake Merritt. It's an ideal race site that will allow a continuing, world-class race run "for paddlers by paddlers" for years to come. It has new docks, calm waters and consistently great weather during the fall season.

California Dragon Boat Association

 Dates and locations are subject to change. Please check back periodically for updates: cdba.org

2019 CDBA Youth Race
Date: April 14, 2019
Location: Lake Merced, San Francisco

2019 CDBA Regional Regatta
Date: May 5, 2019
Location: Lake Merced, San Francisco

2019 CDBA Sprint Race
Date: July 7, 2019
Location: Lake Merced, San Francisco

2019 Northern California International Dragon Boat Festival
Date: September 28-29, 2019
Location: Lake Merritt, Oakland, CA
Information:WWW.SFDRAGONBOAT.COM

2019 CDBA College Cup Championship
Date: TBD
Location: TBD
 

 Clubs:

  • DragonMax is a Dragon Boat Club that practices year-round in Berkeley, California. It is sponsored by the Berkeley Racing Canoe Center (BRCC) dragonmax.org
  • LA Harbor Dragon Boat Club laharbordragonboat.org

Dragon boat racing is one of the earliest known forms of boat racing and is celebrated at festivals and races throughout the world. Californians not only race on their home shores and in California's lakes, but the more serious paddlers also compete in national and international contests.  The roots of dragon boat  racing go back over 2,000 years to the southern provinces of China.

The most popular legend that is recognized in many celebrations surrounds Qu Yuan, a scholar and advisor to the emperor of the Chu Kingdom, who jumped into the Mei Lo River in despair and protest against  government corruption. Local fishermen raced out in their boats to save him. They beat drums and pounded their paddles on the river's waters and threw rice dumplings wrapped in lotus leafs into the river to distract the fish from eating from Qu Yuan's body. Dragon boating evolved from the re-enactment of this legend at annual festivals.

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