Dragons rule the waves in Tweed
JACK Evans Harbour was taken over by dragons yesterday.
But there was no swooping or fire involved as the water-based, legendary characters instead carried hoards of keen paddlers in the annual Dragon Boat Race.
Teams from as far as Brisbane and Grafton pitted their maritime mettle against locals to raise funds for Kids in Need, an organisation that supports sick kids and their families.
The Daily News team was a few paddles short of a race at one stage, but managed to muster up the necessary paddle power to compete and put in a great effort on the day.
With 33 teams competing, president of Tweed Heads Kids in Need, Mike Lawson said he was greatly impressed with the turnout.
"The weather was a bit unsettled, but it didn't dampen spirits," he said.
"It's great to see people put in so much physical effort to help kids in need and their families."
A sausage sizzle helped paddlers regain their strength, with Tweed Heads Rotary Club rolling up their sleeves for the big cook-up.
With a jumping castle and plenty of hot coffee at hand, everyone was catered for.
The race is in its 26th year and started when someone at Kids in Need attended races in Sydney.
"We thought it would be a great way to raise funds and create some colour and excitement in the process," Mr Lawson said.
"It's wonderful to see people come from far away to compete and help out local kids."
Breast Mates, the Brisbane River Dragons, Grafton Dragons, Blue Line (police force) and firies from Brisbane and Tweed Heads were among the competitors.
The Burleigh Fire Dragons have been paddling for 14 years and said they were "proud to help sick kids".