Dragon boats hit water for charity
THE ancient sport of dragon boat racing came to Tweed Heads on Sunday.
The Kids in Need Dragon Boat Festival attracted 35 teams, which competed to help raise funds to assist children with serious illnesses or disabilities.
Kids in Need president Mike Lawson said the Jack Evans Boat Harbour event was a great success.
"We are the oldest dragon boat races in Australia," Lawson said yesterday.
"We've been doing it for 26 years. It was very good."
The headline event, which attracted teams from as far away as Grafton and Brisbane, was won by the Broadwater Dragons.
"There were eight serious teams in it," Lawson said.
"These are guys that train during the week."
The primary school division was won by the Green Dragons, from Banora Point Primary School.
Teacher Debbie Corby said victory was a given.
"Because there were only two teams in the whole regatta we expected a win," Corby said.
"We had two children's teams and a teacher parent team as well."
Corby said the opportunity to paddle was offered to Year 5 and 6 students.
"Apparently some of them have been waiting to get to Year 5 to have a go," she said.
"We had a couple of dry land practices, where they sat on land with the paddles while I showed them how to do the strokes."
In the high school section the Tweed River X crew finished first.
Event marshal Margaret Lawson said it was encouraging to see the students get involved.
"We'd love to have more school teams in next year," she said.
"It was fabulous to be in the renovated boat harbour."
The community final went to the Blue Dragons, a crew made up of police from Queensland, while the corporate event went to the Sunnybank Golden Oldies.