The Capital City Dragon Boat Race is an exciting and colorful fundraiser for the Women’s Center of Greater Lansing. In this event, teams of Dragon Boat paddlers race the clock and each other as they strain to be the first to capture their flags on the Grand River – exciting fun and all for a good cause!
The colorful and fascinating Dragon Boats are raced by teams of 20 to 18 paddlers, driven by one drummer, and carrying one designated flag catcher. Boats are designed and decorated by the teams or the company’s sponsoring them and are a big part of what makes this race so much fun to attend. Dragon Boats are traditionally slim, 44’ long racers decorated with the head and tail of a dragon at bow and stern, respectively.
The Capital City Dragon Boat Race is part of a tradition that comes from southern China where, according to legend, 2,000 years ago the famed integrity and beloved public image of poet and statesman Qu Yuan made him a political target. Using lies, Qu Yuan’s enemies convinced the king that Qu Yuan was not to be trusted, and so the king had him banished.
The public humiliation of this was too much for Qu Yuan and, loading his pockets with stones, he threw himself into the Mi Lo River to drown. Local fishermen raced into the currents to save this popular resident of their province. They beat their drums and splashed with their and paddles as they raced to where he was last seen in the hopes of scaring away any water dragons and to let him know they were coming – but they were too late. In honor of this famous, beloved, and unjustly accused Qu Yuan, Dragon Boat racing was made an annual event.
Growing in popularity throughout China over the years, Dragon Boat racing eventually evolved into an international sport and thousands of the races are now held around the world, yearly – albeit for different reasons than honoring the legend of Qu Yuan!
The 2014 Capital City Dragon Boat Race will feature numerous heats throughout Saturday and Sunday, plus live entertainment, food, drink, ceremonies, awards, and so much more. Come out to support this fun event and the Women’s Center while having a blast in at Lansing’s Adado Riverfront Park!
Capital City Dragon Boat Race 2014
September 13th and 14th
Adado Riverfront Park
For a full schedule of activities and details for this event, please visit: capitalcitydragonboat.com
Capital City Dragon Boat Race Lodging
The fun and bustle of Lansing is only a half hour’s drive from the relaxing quiet of Eaton Rapids and The English Inn Restaurant and Pub. Whatever brings you to the area, choosing to stay at The English Inn Restaurant and Pub will be a decision you wont regret.