Dragon Boat Festival returns to APAC

John Smith

FDMers in Hong Kong and China will be taking a well-deserved holiday today for the eagerly awaited Dragon Boat Festival. Originating from ancient ceremonial and ritualistic traditions in central China more than 2500 years ago, the event marks a public holiday in Hong Kong and China, but is also celebrated in Singapore and Australia. The event is one of the highly anticipated events on the calendar. We spoke to several FDM’ers who are involved in this year’s festivities.

Hong Kong consultant Leo Yau will be racing with CLP Power, “we’ve been practising regularly throughout the season, especially on a Saturday morning when everybody is still sleeping! We’re excited about the race and if we can win it’s going to be a lot of hard work that pays off. Dragon boating is a good way to get in shape, have fun and to experience teamwork.”

Consultant Development Manager Nicole Kep has spent the last few weeks training hard for the event, “I fell in love with dragon boating ten years ago when I joined a social team in Hong Kong called Los Chiles. Over the years, the love for the ocean and paddling has grown and I now train and race competitively with one of Hong Kong’s premier dragon boat teams, Victoria Recreational Club. We’ve had races every weekend leading up to the main day. Dragon boat season runs from January to June and once the season ends we switch to outrigger canoe boats for the rest of the year, the most challenging races being around Hong Kong Island and Molokai in Hawaii. Both are 50-100km iron-man races. We never stop!”

There will be a host of activities and celebrations taking place across Hong Kong and China today. The largest and most prominent Dragon Boat Race in Hong Kong will take place at Stanley Beach from 8am where over 200 teams and over 30,000 spectators are expected to attend. Aberdeen Fishing Village, Sai Kung Town Waterfront and Cheung Chau will also be holding events.

Since relocating from Hong Kong to Shanghai, China Team Lead, Dora Zhang has continued training for the boat race, but won’t be attending the main event today. “We usually train for two hours in the sea every Saturday from February to June and then one and a half hours training on land every Tuesday evening. I started Dragon boating when I was on-site with one of FDM’s clients.  Being a part of the team enhanced my mental and physical strength as well as my endurance and teamwork. I have built lifelong friendships with my teammates through the sweat, screams and cheers.”

The event is a great chance for family, friends, colleagues and sports fanatics to come together. Here at FDM, we wish everybody luck taking part in the event today!

Featured image credit: Photo by Cheng Feng on Unsplash