Photo: Deborah Pfeiffer
Lined up and ready to go
A record number of paddlers are expected to be in Penticton this weekend for the 12th annual Raymond James Dragon Boat Festival.
In all about 2,700 people will participate in 78 races over the two day period at Skaha Lake.
"This festival has outgrown our expectations, growing from 12 teams in 2000 to more than 90 this year," said organizer Don Mulhall. "It has become one of the most anticipated dragon boat events of the year."
The festival will see teams of 20 paddlers, plus a drummer and steers-person, from both BC and Alberta racing the 14- metre canoes in 500 metre sprints. Penticton's female paddlers are expected to be among the top competitors, and are expected to be in the final on Sunday afternoon.
Along with the finals, races on Sunday will also include the Breast Cancer Survivor Finals and carnation ceremony, starting just before 11 a.m.
Local favourite, Survivorship, will be looking to win the Dale Charles Memorial cup.
A highlight of this year's event will be the inaugural race of the first dragon boat team in Canada for developmentally disabled adults.
After three months of practicing for 90 minutes twice a week, the HSBC Flying Dragons are ready to rip through the water.
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