What is the Dragon Boat Summer Learning Festival?
Partners in Education is in its host its 17th annual dragon boat festival here in Toledo, OH on July 21, 2018!
The Festival serves as a showcase of educational programs and summer learning opportunities. At these races, we also celebrate and honor the Chinese heritage of this event.
The team building experience includes up to two practices and coaching on working as a team with a professional steersperson on afternoons during the week of the race and coaching & support the day of the race. Each team participates in three races during the unique one-day race event. We work with Dragon Boat Racing LLC to bring this event to Toledo. Our Dragon Boat company provides the boats and the life jackets, our partners provide the paddlers. New in 2015, Partners in Education included a Summer Learning Village. Partners in Education and its nonprofit partners host hands-on stations with activities and resources to extend learning into the summer, so families can enjoy learning together. The event takes place at International Park on the Maumee River in downtown Toledo.
This event is about learning, culture, fun, families,fitness, teamwork and team-building. The Dragon Boat races themselves are great for corporate, business, church, civic, and school groups. The races pit competing businesses against one another for special trophies. The course begins across from the Owens Corning World Headquarters building in front of the Docks restaurants and races to the finish line near the lagoon at International Park. Dragon Boat races began in China over 2,500 years ago. This year’s winner receives the Rasmus/Niehous Cup.
Things to do at the Festival – View the races, visit our Summer Learning Village filled with hands-on activities for the whole family, explore the China Village for authentic Chinese culture and enjoy entertainment from area organizations plus BIG STEM events where science explodes into fun.
Free Race Day Activities include:
- Demonstrations of traditional Chinese performances
- Exciting Dragon Boat races
- Summer Learning Village with many hands-on activities for children and parents from 10am-1pm
Items For Purchase:
We offer food vendor and Chinese cultural area with items for purchase.
What is Dragon Boat Racing?
With a history of more than 2,500 years, the sport of dragon boating originated in ancient China. The legends include warring states, radical politics and fierce loyalty and passion written poetically by one man – Qu Yuan. This man was exiled from the land that he loved, and in turn committed suicide in the Miluo River in a final form of protest against the corruption of his era. During an attempt to save Qu Yuan, the locals took to the river in their fishing boats, splashing their paddles to keep the water demons and evil spirits away.
Modern day dragon boating has few elements to this ancient tale remaining. However, it has evolved into a worldwide competitive sport, bringing together millions across the globe annually. Festivals with traditional Asian flare and culture are commonplace alongside a dragon boat race in recent years. High level competitions have also been organized since the mid 1970s.
But the sport’s growth has been most commonly found at the grassroots level. Dragon boating has become an extremely popular vehicle for fundraising, and tool for corporate team building. Local communities combine these two concepts to breath new life into their waterfront areas, and to stimulate their local economy.
Teams are formed with 18-25 people from all walks of life. Any age, size, ability and gender can learn to paddle on a dragon boat team. 20 paddlers are seated in 10 rows of 2 with a drummer sitting in the bow, facing the paddlers. The paddler’s job is to paddle in unison with the entire team. The drummer’s job is to beat the drum in sync with the paddlers and to motivate their team to the finish line. A steersperson (provided by the festival) stands in the stern of the boat, guiding the boat straight down the race course with a 10-foot oar.