Future Dragon Boat Events Update

A message from the False Creek Canoe Club in Vancouver, BC:

Dear Residents of the Creekside Community Centre and surrounding neighbourhoods,I am writing on behalf of the Canadian International Dragon Boat Festival Society. We produce the Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival, run the paddling club that operates out of the Creekside Community Centre and are also responsible for three other smaller events to be held throughout May and June. We have made some changes to our events to mitigate our effects on the community and with this letter I hope to inform you and ask that you pass this information along to Strata Councils and other residents.

The schedule of events to be held by our Society is:

March 15 – Paddling Expo, this event is to be held inside the gymnasium of Creekside Community Centre from 10 am to 5 pmand should have no direct effect on the neighbourhood. However, info on how to volunteer or paddle at one of events will be presented on this day. Hope you can come by and say Hi!

May 3 – Junior Regatta and Youth Day, a day of paddling and fun for children and youth, held in partnership with the City of Vancouver Park Board. If you have school age children you might like to encourage them to take part in this full day of learning and racing, surrounded by performances and visual and performing arts programmed specifically for these age groups.

May 4 – Spring Spring, a dragon boat race using 12 person boats. Come out and cheer a team to victory.

June 7 & 8 – Dragon Zone 500M RegattaMore than 100 teams take part in this event. To lessen the impact on the neighbourhood the teams are broken into 3 segments with approximately 32 teams racing during a 4 hour time period at any given time, rather than all 100 teams being present at the same time. This should lessen the parking and noise impact on the immediate neighbourhood.

June 16-19 - Festival Setup. 
Most activity in and around Creekside Community Centre and south side of Science World. This should not have much impact on the residents. On Thursday, June 19th,  there may be some roads closed to all traffic other than local, so residents may be stopped briefly and asked where they are going. This is a safety precaution. 

June 20th, 8 am  Street Closures to all but local traffic. 

June 20th, 5 pm Blessing Ceremony
This is a colourful and interesting ceremony during which Taoist priests “open” the eyes of the dragons, ensuring a safe race. The public is invited to watch the ceremony and the best viewing is from the seawall area in front of the green trailer to the east of the community centre. June 20th, 7 pm to 10 pmOpening Night Concert featuring Grammy and Juno winner Alex Cuba and his band. We promise to be closed by 10 pm and THERE WILL BE NO FIREWORKS THIS YEAR (again, really, we are so sorry:) 

June 21-22, 7 am to 7 pm  Rio Tinto Dragon Boat Festival. 
Most activity in and around Creekside Community Centre and south side of Science World. There will be activities and performances for children, an art exhibit, arts and craft sales, an interactive art project, international cuisine, a stage featuring professional musicians, and of course, dragon boat racing. Most activities begin at 10 am but races begin at 8 am. The Racer’s Village is to be located in the big City of Vancouver parking lot on the corner of Ontario Street and 1st Avenue. Most of the early morning noise will be in this area and we will endeavour to keep the noise down. No loudspeakers will be used until after 10 am. There is also a bike detour around the site. The main stage is operating from 11 am to 6 pm and we hope this does not cause too much of an inconvenience. 

More information can be found at our website: dragonboatbc.ca.Another community organization, False Creek Racing Canoe Club will also be running two events from our docks and the surrounding area. These events are to be held the weekends of May 10th and May 24th. For more information their website isfcrcc.comPat Pawlett is the Commodore and can be reached by email: pat_pawlett@telus.net or cell: 604-786-2204. Any questions 
or concerns with these events should be directed to this organization.We hope that the residents are not too inconvenienced by our events and as a thank you we would like to invite our neighbours to be our guest for a glass of wine, beer, or soft drink at our Granville Island Brewery Beer Garden, operated on-site during the festival. This location offers great viewing of the race and we’d be happy to have you there as our guest. Anyone interested should please RSVP by emailing to info@dragonboatbc.ca so that we can add the name to our GIB/VIP list. We are also planning a Community Open House in July and you will be invited to take part in all paddling activities free of charge. Stay tuned for more information on this fun event.

On closing, we wish to thank you for welcoming us to your neighbourhood. We are very excited about our new home in Creekside Community Centre and as we learn more and more about the area, we appreciate how patient our retail and residential neighbours have been with us. As someone who lives or works in or near the Olympic Village, you may have more suggestions or ideas that will ensure our involvement in the community is a  positive one for all and I encourage you to contact me if you have any ideas or feedback whatsoever.

Yours truly,
Ann Phelps
General Managerann@dragonboatbc.ca