13 September, 2023

Dragon boating on the rise

DRAGON Boat Pumicestone club is seeking new members as the race season is about to start, while the club is also changing its home base.

Dragon Boat Pumicestone has come along in leaps and bounds this year, and is eager for more members to join as the club relocates.
Dragon Boat Pumicestone has come along in leaps and bounds this year, and is eager for more members to join as the club relocates.

Having been registered since early this year, the club will actively recruit and run an Introduction to Dragon Boat each Saturday throughout September.

No experience is required while the sport is open to anyone aged eight and beyond, regardless of fitness level.

Highly experienced dragon boaters will lead the sessions, and participants will learn a safe and correct paddling technique in a fun and supportive environment while all equipment is provided.

Attendance is free but registrations are essential, and can be done by contacting dragonboatpumicestone@gmail.comor 0493 525 980, while the club can also be found on social media.

Currently based at Kal Ma Kuta Drive in Sandstone Point, the club will soon relocate to 60 Sylvan Beach Esplanade in Bribie Island, right next to Volunteer Marine Rescue and Mahalo Outriggers.

The club’s president Michelle Hanton said the club formed after a group of keen paddlers from Dragons Abreast decided just over a year ago that it was time to form a community club for the Pumicestone area.

As the first female Life Member of AusDBF while also being the founder of Dragons Abreast Australia as well as being a former AusDBF board director, Michelle was approached to help establish the new club on the island.

In January of this year, Dragon Boat Pumicestone Inc had been accepted as a registered member of Dragon Boat Queensland (DBQ), and then dragon boat ‘Khaleesi’ arrived in February while the club also hit the water for the first time in February.

About six months later the club was gifted a second dragon boat – named ‘Linda’ – courtesy of the 1770 Dragon Boat Club.

Dragon Boat Pumicestone currently has 55 members ranging from 29 to 84 years of age and coming from all walks of life. Dragons Abreast Pumicestone – the breast cancer survivor group of paddlers – is part of the club.

The main race season runs from September through to April, with the impending season culminating with the Australian national titles in Perth in 2024.

Additionally, the Queensland titles will be held at Lake Kawana on March 16 and 17.

All Dragon Boat Queensland clubs are eligible to compete at the Queensland events, plus there are corporate and community events run by local dragon boat clubs that encourage local businesses, schools, universities and others to become involved.

The Dragon Boat Pumicestone president said many participants were hooked on the sport from the moment they stepped into a dragon boat.

“I think the beauty is that you are not going to be left behind if you stop paddling, because the boat continues to move. You are carried along,” Michelle said.

“If this were a running or even a walking group, you’d be left behind, but here, we are one crew.

“There are pathways to reach the elite level of the sport, and Australia is well-ranked on the international stage.”

Having begun paddling in June, Vicky Connor said, “(I) had the best time for my first event and fresh to the club representing Dragon Boat Pumicestone, I am so proud to be part of such a great team.

“It was so good to see what we can become in the near future, and what we are able to achieve with a little fine tune timing.

“The teams we competed against as well as our very own have inspired me to level up.

“Absolutely loved it.”


Most Popular