Milwaukee County Parks
Press Release

Dragon Boat Festival Returns to Veterans Park July 30

The free event showcases Chinese culture and tradition with dragon-boat racing as the main attraction.

By - Jul 6th, 2016 10:31 am

Milwaukee, WI (July 6, 2016) – Milwaukee Chinese Community Center will present the fourth Milwaukee Dragon Boat Festival at Milwaukee County’s Veterans Park, Saturday, July 30, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

The free event showcases Chinese culture and tradition with dragon-boat racing as the main attraction. Other highlights include the eye-dotting and dragon dance, cultural exhibits, and performances of traditional dance, Chinese folk music, and martial arts. Authentic Chinese food will be available for purchase.

Dragon boat racing will begin at 8 a.m. With vibrantly colored dragon heads and tails, the 43-foot-long boats are sometimes referred to as “canoes on steroids.” Teams of up to 21 men and women will row their boat in unison to the beat of their drummer. The event organizer provides each team with a steersman to direct the boat using a 10-foot oar from the stern. Proceeds benefit Ronald McDonald House.

“We are so excited to see the growth of the event, this year we have reached our maximum capacity with fifty teams!” said Zhaohui Wang, Executive Director of the planning committee.

Following the first round of dragon boat racing will be the opening ceremony at 10:30 a.m. featuring a dragon dance. Before the dragon dance, an eye-dotting ceremony will “awaken the dragon.” An ancient Chinese tradition says that the touch of a calligrapher’s brush to the dragon’s eyes will bring the dragon to life.

In addition to cultural exhibits and performances, the young and young at heart will have the opportunity to make opera masks and lanterns, play traditional games, participate in a dragon parade, and learn to write and speak Chinese.

Co-sponsors of the Entertainment Stage are Millercoors LLC and Fifth Avenue Eye Associates.

Veterans Park is located on Milwaukee’s Lakefront at 1010 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive.

Milwaukee Chinese Community Center is a community-based nonprofit organization founded in 2006. MCCC strives to offer the best learning experience in Chinese language and cultural programs through the Milwaukee Modern Chinese School and Youth Leader Academy. The mission of MCCC is serving members and community through Chinese language education, culture outreach, and social engagement.

For more information on the Milwaukee Dragon Boat Festival, visit milwaukeedragonboatfest.org.

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