Dragon Boats Spotted In Augusta

2013 Arts in the Heart Festival (Image 1)

The dragons are coming to Augusta…dragon boats that is!

Goodwill's Good Boats Race and Festival will be a day of heart-pounding races and a celebration of Asian-American culture all while paddling for a purpose. Good Boats for Goodwill is a community event like no other that will brighten up the banks of Lake Olmstead with the colors of the Orient on Saturday, April 27th, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

Don't miss the beginning of the races at 9:30 a.m.  At noon, the festival showcases Asian traditions that include the blessing of the boats and “Painting of the Dragon Eye.” Family fun will be enjoyed throughout the day with races and entertainment scheduled throughout the day. Chinese cultural acts and the sure to please eggroll eating contest are among the featured activities. Admission is free.

In addition to the exciting races, the festival along the banks of Lake Olmstead will also feature an Asian-themed marketplace and performance stage – complete with food, music, crafts and children's activities. These activities will include making canvas dragon boats, writing Chinese calligraphy, and painting Chinese zodiac animals. Throughout the day, visitors will enjoy entertainment from many local groups celebrating the culture of Pacific Islanders, Chinese, Philippine, Korean, Thai and Vietnamese groups. Some of the stage performances include: Tai Chi with swords, a Peacock Folk Dance, Chinese Chorus, a Kung Fu demonstration, Fan Dance and the Lion Dance.

Food vendors will feature mouth-watering Asian-inspired food such as fried rice, Chinese dumplings, chicken wings and mango ice cream to provide a taste of the Orient, as well as standard American fare such as hamburgers and funnel cakes. In the marketplace, local and unique arts and crafts, similar to those found in the street markets of Hong Kong, will be available for festival participants.

In conjunction with GoodBoats for Goodwill, local artists with the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association will hang their artwork in the gallery at Goodwill's Hire Grounds cafe at 3179 Washington Road, Augusta. The artwork is available for purchase and can be viewed during the month of April from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

About Dragon Boat Racing
Originating in China over 2,500 years ago, dragon boats are the largest flat water racing canoes in the world. Constructed of solid teak, these spectacular boats weigh 1500 pounds and are over 30 feet long. Each dragon boat team consists of 20 paddlers and a steer person all kept in sync by a drummer. Competitive and novice crews are registering in droves to participate in this annual, unique race and festival in the CSRA.

All proceeds from Good Boats benefit the Building Goodwill Campaign to complete the Augusta Career Campus. Sign up to paddle, sponsor a boat or volunteer at www.goodboats.org or find Good Boats on Facebook.

To learn more about services and individuals served by Goodwill of Middle Georgia and the CSRA, visit the website.

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