THE OLDEST, LARGEST, MOST TRADITIONAL DRAGON BOAT FESTIVAL IN THE US – LAUNCHES ON MEADOW LAKE THIS SATURDAY AUGUST 4 & SUNDAY, AUGUST 5, 2012 – WITH CASH & PRIZES at STAKE! WITH 180+ TEAMS, INVOLVING MORE THAN 2,500 PARTICIPANTS COMPETING FROM ACROSS the U.S. & CANADA + SPECIAL PERFORMING GUESTS- AN AWARD WINNING LION DANCE TEAM from CHINA
AUG 2nd , 2012 NY, NY – In Celebration of the “Year of the Water Dragon” the organizing committee of the 22nd Annual Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in New York (HKDBF-NY) announced that this year’s competition is to be held on Saturday, August 4th & Sunday, August 5th, 2012. It will feature cash & prizes for competitors in this year’s US Dragon Boat Open Championship.
Other festival events consist of several new special Cup races, the Hong Kong SAR Family Invitational and the Hong Kong Business Family Invitational honoring the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Municipal Cup featuring teams from several of our elected officials and government agencies and the Health Invitational along with special youth, women and sponsor races, plus a Media challenge and a Charity race featuring $7,500 to be donated to the charities designated by the competing teams. The Charity Race participants include HSBC USA, DCH and Shanghai Commercial Bank Ltd. Each of them will contribute $2500 to put in the charity fund. This year’s Corporate Invitational looks to be a good one, with many Corporate Teams joining us to race for their company. The Festival will be held at Meadow Lake, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens, New York rain or shine. Admission is free.
HKDBF-NY, a multicultural celebration and sporting event, is the largest multicultural Festival in New York and the largest festival of its kind in the U.S. HKDBF NY keeps up the age old tradition of Dragon Boat Racing in colorful, custom made teak boats, which are virtual works of art gliding on water. Custom made by a small coterie of craftsmen in Hong Kong, weighing one ton each, colorfully painted with a Dragon head at the front and Dragon tail at the rear, the boats are piloted by up to 20 crewmen, including 18 paddlers, a drummer and steers person. For twenty-one successful years HKDBF-NY has attracted a diverse, multi-cultural audience of more than 60,000 attendees throughout North America. With more than 180+ well-trained teams, involving more than 2,500 participants competing from across the U.S. and Canada, this year’s festival is expected to be notable in its scale and fierce competition.
With cash & prizes at stake for the US Dragon Boat Open Championships, the festival takes place over two days on the site of the 1964 World’s Fair, featuring events for the entire family. The opening day parade at noon on Saturday, August 4th will be followed by the New York City Championship Races. The U.S. Dragon Boat Open Championship will be held on Sunday, August 5th with the teams vigorously competing for their share of the cash & prizes.
Racing starts at 9:00 a.m. and events last throughout the day until approximately 5:00 p.m. each day, rain or shine. Other festival events consist of the corporate youth, women’s invitational, and sponsors challenge, a photo contest as well as presentations on the VERIZON STAGE of traditional Chinese arts, martial arts demonstrations, the traditional Dragon dance, musical and other diverse performances and demonstrations of folk arts and crafts.
This year we have a very special appearance from the Award winning Lion Dancers from Zhanjian, Guangdong, China. This team is the recipient of China’s last Lion Dancers competition. sponsored by the Chinese Association of Lion Dancers and Dragon Dancing Teams (a division of China’s national Sport Association). They will perform the colorful and exciting Southern style of Lion Dancing.
An ethnic food court and booths staffed by sponsors of the event many of whom will be giving away promotional items, and many community-based organizations participating help make for a unique, action packed, multi-cultural, New York weekend.
The tradition of Dragon Boat Racing is an annual Chinese rite commemorating the idealistic poet and reformer Qu Yuan who drowned himself in the third century B.C. to protest against his emperor’s policies. The locals raced in their boats in an attempt to rescue the poet. To prevent fish and water dragons from eating his body, the locals beat their drums and splashed their paddles. This was the beginning of Dragon Boat Racing.
Admission to the HKDBF-NY is Free, Events take place Rain or Shine. Directions to the Festival by car – take the Long Island Expressway to Van Wyck Expressway to exit 11 south, then stay on service road to the Park. Parking is severely limited. Please take the MTA or car pool. Directions to the Festival by bus/subway –Again this year we’ve worked with the MTA to insure easy and safe transportation to the Festival site. Festival goers can use their MetroCard to take the #7 Train to the CitiField stop and transfer from there to special MTA shuttle buses that will take them directly to the Festival site, or they can walk from the CitiField stop (about 15 minutes) or take the colorful park trolley to the festival site. Parking on-site is limited, you can park at CitiField and take the special MTA shuttle with your MetroCard or use correct change.
This years Sponsors include; Title Sponsor the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, NY: Corporate Supporter HSBC Bank USA; other major sponsors include; Verizon, Time Warner Cable, Con Edison, J.P. Morgan Chase, New York Community Bank, Resort World Casino New York City, National Grid, State Farm, Wells Fargo, Shanghai Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, New York Hospital Queens, Sheraton La Guardia East Hotel, Flushing Savings Bank, Vallo Transportation, Ltd., Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens Chamber of Commerce, Office of the Queensborough President, Helen Marshall, NYC &Co, and Discover Queens.
Media &Creative Partners: WNBC TV 4, The New York Times, Sing Tao Daily News, The Queens Courier, GoodNews Broadcast.com, RNN, MultiCultural Radio Broadcasting, Inc.(AM1480, Sino Television, Sinocast, M-Weekly Magazine), Fusia Communications, Inc., Inak Design, Time Warner Cable. Additional support provided by the Times Ledger Newspaper Group, Foxwoods and the NY Daily News.
Downloadable photos are available at www.hkdbf-ny.org .
Special hotel rates are available at several local hotels.
For full schedule and information visit our website www.hkdbf-ny.org or call 718-767-1776
HKDBF NY-2011 is a non-profit, tax-exempt, cultural organization.