About Dragonboat Racing
Dragon Boat Races
Dragon Boat races are a part of a larger Chinese cultural tradition that goes back 2,400 years. It began on the life-sustaining riverbanks in the valleys of southern China as a fertility rite performed to ensure bountiful crops. The first participants held their celebration on the fifth day of the lunar month of the Chinese calendar. The race was held to avert misfortune and encourage the rains needed for prosperity. The object of their worship was the dragon.
Also known as Poet's Day, the Chinese Dragon boat festival commemorates the death of Qu Yuan, a Chinese poet and minister. Learn more.
The Oshkosh Dragonboat Race and Festival
The Oshkosh Dragon Boat Race and festival began in 2006 as part of the UW Oshkosh Fall Fest on the Fox celebration. In collaboration with the Oshkosh Community YMCA and the Grand Opera House, a working committee was established to develop a community event that would benefit campus and community while simultaneously enhancing the appreciation and recreation of our waterways.
Seven years later, the Oshkosh Dragonboat Race and Festival continues to be an event the city of Oshkosh looks forward to. Our course is a 250 meter stretch of the Fox River in Oshkosh, Wis. Teams congregate in our Athlete's Village located inside the the beautiful Leach Amphitheater, just steps away from the start line. The races are hosted in a festival-like atmosphere with live entertainment, concessions and activities for all ages.
Proceeds from this event support our community
Proceeds from the Oshkosh Dragonboat Race & Festival go to:
- The Oshkosh Community Dragonboat Scholarship, a financial-need based scholarship available to Winnebago County residents seeking to fulfill their personal, academic or career goals through a degree program at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.
- The YMCA Strong Kids Campaign, offering membership assistance to more than 2,400 youth, families and individuals annually. The Strong Kids Campaign assures older adults, individuals with disabilities, group home members and financially challenged individuals participation at the Oshkosh Community YMCA.