19th Annual YMCA Dragon Boat Team Challenge

The date for the 19th Annual YMCA Dragon Boat Team Challenge is September 28 – 30, 2017. The event is held at Northshore Park and Lake Woodlands. The venue sponsor is The Woodlands Township. The popular community team building event has sold out in the last 4 years.

Are you looking for a unique, fun and easy team building outing? YMCA Dragon Boat is for you. The YMCA does all the planning and facilitating . . . all you have to do is recruit your team and show up ready to play. A team is composed of a minimum of 20 members but no more than 30. Each team roster must have a minimum of 5 females and participants must be at least 18 years of age. High School teams, 9th – 12th grade, are eligible to participate in the Sunday morning bracket: 8:00am – Noon.

The event features 6 different team activities, but the Dragon Boat Races are the main event. The boats, owned by The American Dragon Boat Association, are transported down, annually from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Dragon boats are forty foot long, extremely, colorful dragon headed canoes and weigh over 1800 pounds. This exciting team building event is designed to build community spirit among corporations, civic groups and community organizations. The activities are designed to bring individuals together to achieve a single goal – To Have FUN! They achieve this by becoming a team and working together as a synchronized unit. It’s much more than “beating the other team.” It is the camaraderie, the team work and team spirit, visiting and playing with old friends, meeting new friends and laughing. Along with improving health, whenever teamwork is involved, there’s the added benefit of being connected to others.
It is adults having the opportunity to play like kids!
The sport of dragon boating is over 2000 years old with its origins steeped in tradition. The pageantry, the colors, the mechanics of dragon boating are educational and present a view into the past. Over 2000 years ago Chu Yuan, poet, warrior and loyal aide to the emperor, fell victim to plots and deception and found himself out of favor at court. When the old emperor died, Chu Yuan was unjustly banished and wandered the countryside composing poems he hoped would be heard and heeded by the new emperor. His inconsolable desolation grew until one day he threw himself into the Mi Lo River. His devoted followers, learning of his death, rushed to search for his body. Fearing the fish might devour the body; they beat their paddles on the water and banged drums and gongs to frighten the fish. Today, athletes from around the world meet to commemorate Yuan’s sacrifice for honor and justice in the form of Dragon Boat Racing. The Mississippi River Adventures acquired two dragon boats in late 1985 and brought the first dragon boat team to the Midwest in 1986. Teams from six states and two foreign countries participated in races as part of the Mississippi River Adventures annual canoe float (MADRAC). This successful event led to the first American Dragon Boat Association (ADBA) International Dragon Boat Race on the Navy Pier in Chicago on June 19, 1988.
The YMCA makes it so EASY to participate. The Y organizes and facilitates all team activities, provides all the equipment, rules and instructions as well as a team tent, water & ice and event t-shirt. The Y also provides professional staff, volunteers and safety/security agencies to create a positive, safe and fun environment. The team entry is $750 and $625 for High School and Non-Profit Groups. All you have to do is send in the team registration form, recruit your team, show up and have FUN!

Rowing for a CAUSE. YMCA Dragon Boat is a charity event benefitting the Y’s Annual Campaign. Funds raised ensures the YMCA can continue to strengthen our community through the programs we offer and provide financial assistance to families in need. Thanks to our generous sponsors, hundreds of at risk youth can participate, at no charge, in YMCA Youth Development and Leadership Programs to learn, grow and thrive. Every dollar raised is an investment in our community and our future.

Get ready to Row . . . Row . . . Row . . . your Dragon Boat! For more information visit www.ymcadragonboat.org or call Roxanne Davis at 281-681-6730 or rdavis@ymcahouston.org.