The 2010 Long Beach Dragon Boat Festival

Jul 28, 2010 by Lisa Newton

If you hear the words, “Dragon Boat” what vision comes to your mind–a boat shaped like a dragon, or a boat with a dragon head attached?

A dragon boat is a human-powered boat traditionally made of teak wood of various designs and sizes. Usually, a standard dragon boat will encompass 22 people, 20 paddlers, one drummer, a person facing the paddlers, and one sweep who sits at the rear of the boat. With varying lengths, dragon boats might include crews as small as 10, or can grow as large to a crew of 50+.

At the heart of the boat is the drummer, who keeps the beat of the paddler’s strokes, while simultaneously maintaining the proper speed of the boat.

The drummer keeps vigilant in always being aware of the other boats around in order to avoid a crash and to keep the boat performing at its peak. It’s very important to keep all of the paddlers running in unison.

At the rear of the boat sits the sweep–who controls the dragon boat’s direction with what is known as the sweep oar.

I bet you’re wondering why I’m describing a dragon boat?

Wait, I’m sure the title gave that answer away. To see a few real dragon boat races, head down to Long Beach.

It’s time for the 2010 Long Beach Dragon Boat Festival.

All the action is at Marine Stadium in Long Beach on July 31st, from 8:00am-6:30pm – August 1st, from 8:00am-5:00pm.

In addition to hosting one of the largest dragon boat competitions in California, there will be Chinese traditional art demonstrations, Chinese Acrobats, traditional dance, hip hop, music, and martial arts performances.

Best of all, the two days are free.

Remember to tell everyone that you read about it on Travelin’ Local!

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