23rd Annual Hong Kong Dragonboat Festival

By Yvonne Lo

Last weekend, on August 10th and 11th, the 2013 Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in New York was held at Flushing Meadows Corona Park where community teams compete in this unique sport for the grand prize of $1,500. Other festivities include food stalls, activity booths, performances, and sponsored giveaways that make this annual summer event a must-go.

The tradition of Dragon Boat Racing is an annual Chinese rite commemorating the idealistic poet and reformer Qu Yuan who drowned himself in the third century B.C. to protest against his emperor’s policies. The locals raced in their boats in an attempt to rescue the poet. To prevent fish and water dragons from eating his body, the locals beat their drums and splashed their paddles. This was the beginning of Dragon Boat Racing.

Shaolin Masters

Every year performances and activities are available for spectators to enjoy while the teams prepare for the races. This year’s performances featured at the Verizon Fois stage included the Chinese Music Ensemble of New York, lions and dragon dancing teams with percussionists, BAAM, I Giullari di Piazza, Shaolin Masters, the Bailen Brothers, and many more.

Shaolin Masters

Activities available to participate included the Balloon Man (Twister), Arts & Crafts tent, and face painters. There are different performances and activities every year, making each festival a unique one every time.

Shaolin Masters

Congratulations to all of the team who competed in the 2013 Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in New York! For results, please visit: http://www.hkdbf-ny.org/home.php?choice=results

Bruce Cost Ginger Ale

Mawuena Kodjovi Trio

Shin Ramyun

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