Aspiral Youth Partners Association and the Original Wooden Dragon Boat Restoration Team invite you to the Awakening the Dragons ceremony at 2 p.m., Thursday Dec. 8.
Five fully restored, original Chinese teak dragon boats will be on display in all their majesty, says Ted Crouch, one of the initiators of the project.
Special guests will be involved in the ceremony and team members will also be on location to talk about the project.
“The ceremony consists of dotting the bulging eyes of the carved dragon head attached to the boat, in the sense of ending its slumber and re-energizing its spirit,” Crouch says.
Awakening the Dragons will be held in The Den across from Starbucks at The Mall at Piccadilly.
For information, contact Wendy Hayward, Media and event co-ordinator at 250-803-0843.
Following an official welcome and opening remarks, special guests will be introduced and recognized for their efforts in the dragon boat restoration project.
Crouch first saw the boats advertised in a boating magazine and went to view them in Vancouver, where the Chinese Cultural Centre Dragon Boat Association (CCCDBA) offered them to him.
The Chinese boats were donated to Expo 1986, the World Exposition on Transportation and Communication, to introduce the sport of dragon boating.
“Several years later, the Vancouver Taiwanese Cultural Society introduced six of their traditional yellow cedar racing boats to Vancouver, bringing the complete collection to a total of 15 wooden dragon boats – the only one if its kind in Canada and possibly the world,” said Ted Crouch of the Shuswap Association for Rowing and Paddling (SARP).
“Following two decades of regular use by thousands of paddlers, they had been dry-docked under the Burrard Street bridge since 2008 and each of the boats required varying degrees of restoration.”