Events
News
Based on facts either observed and verified firsthand by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

Dragon Boat festival returns to Victoria this weekend

The festival has been a staple event in Victoria for nearly 30 years

Events
News
Based on facts either observed and verified firsthand by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

Dragon Boat festival returns to Victoria this weekend

The festival has been a staple event in Victoria for nearly 30 years

Photo: Victoria Dragon Boat Festival Facebook
Photo: Victoria Dragon Boat Festival Facebook
Events
News
Based on facts either observed and verified firsthand by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.

Dragon Boat festival returns to Victoria this weekend

The festival has been a staple event in Victoria for nearly 30 years

Get the news and events in Victoria, in your inbox every morning.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Dragon Boat festival returns to Victoria this weekend
Photo: Victoria Dragon Boat Festival Facebook

Sleek, fast boats will be in the water for two days of races today and tomorrow at the Canada Dry Victoria Dragon Boat Festival. The free festival at the Inner Harbour and Ship’s Point, features more than 40 boats.

The 470-metre race from Laurel Point to Ship’s Point includes competitive and recreational teams from the Island, Mainland and Interior, as well as from the US. 

According to popular legend, dragon boating—a traditional Chinese cultural sport that dates back more than 2,400 years—began as an effort to find the body of the poet Qu Yuan after he was drowned by a river dragon. 

Traditionally, dragon boat racing took place on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month of the Chinese calendar—the anniversary of Qu Yuan’s death—to bring rain, fertile prosperity, and an abundant harvest. 

The Dragon Boat festival has its local roots intertwined with the 1994 Commonwealth Games, held here in Victoria.

The Victoria Chinese Commerce Association brought in dragon boats from Vancouver to commemorate Hong Kong Day. 

With the exception of the COVID years of 2020-21, the event has been a splashing success every year in the Inner Harbour and remains the only festival in Canada taking place in a working harbour.

Today’s competitions—including the first two qualifying heats and races for the Visiting Team Cup and the Senior C Cup—begin at 8:30am. The semi-finals and finals go tomorrow, with medal presentations at 1pm.

The action isn’t limited to the water, with a cultural and family activities tent hosting cultural crafts and entertainment for children, and local artists performing on the fest’s main stage.

Performers scheduled to appear today include Lekwungen Traditional Dancers, Shale, Bridal Party, Kimbz, and Actual Human People. Tomorrow, it’s Chinese Dance Victoria, Victoria Chinese Opera, TK the Artist, and Blacasphalt. 

The Wong Sheung Kung Fu Club opens the festival with a dragon dance today and returns with lion dances tomorrow.   

If you’re near the main stage today at 1pm, you’ll be able to catch a blessing and eye dotting ceremony—an ancient ritual where Taoist priests awaken the spirits of the dragon boats that sleep in the mountains. 

The weather forecast is looking superb and if that means a cold one may be in order, you’ll have no problem finding a pint on either of the two VI Brewing outdoor patios, one by the main stage, the other by the pier. 

And if food is more than just a beer to you, you’ll be able to sample tasty treats from several food trucks.

Craft vendors and community exhibitors will also be there.

If you notice a lot of funky lanterns kicking around, their for the Lights of Courage: $3 gets you a paper lantern on which you can write a personal message and hang it up for display. Proceeds go toward the BC Cancer Foundation.

The lighting of the lanterns is slated for tonight at nine. 

Break eggs with Denny’s Canada at a festival breakfast by the Main Stage this morning until 11. 

BC’s Flower Ceremony will take place tomorrow at noon.

contact@capitaldaily.ca

Related News

Everything happening for Winter Arts Fest this weekend
Stay connected to your city with the Capital Daily newsletter.
By filling out the form above, you agree to receive emails from Capital Daily. You can unsubscribe at any time.