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Early-bird registration open for Dragon Boat Festival

20th anniversary of summer event to be held Aug. 17 on Kempenfelt Bay
bdf 2 2019-08-24
The 20th anniversary of the Barrie Dragon Boat Festival will be held this August. File photo

The 20th anniversary of the Barrie Dragon Boat Festival is set for Aug. 17 with the early-bird registration now open until April 30.

“Raising over $47,000 last year, we look forward to the friendly competition to see which team can raise the most funds to support their favourite charity," said  Chris Vanderkruys, Director of Business & Development for the Barrie Public Library, host for the event. "This is what makes our event so special - seeing the ripple effect of these funds throughout our community, while also supporting library services. With 2024 being the year of the Wood Dragon, our volunteers look forward to incorporating unique aspects of this into this year’s event."

The library’s organizing committee is excited to welcome 30 teams to Heritage Park for a day of paddling on Kempenfelt Bay for a great cause. Encouraging paddlers of all skill levels, the Barrie Dragon Boat Festival is an inclusive opportunity to take part in or observe from the shores, an exciting day of racing and family fun, said a news release.

"This unique event has become an anchor in our community, bringing people together to support so many great causes, including the Barrie Public Library," added Vanderkruys. "We are grateful for the continuous participation of all the teams and organizations, our volunteers, and the generosity of longtime supporters like our presenting sponsor, Tim Hortons.” 

Teams can take advantage of early-bird savings from April 1-30. A fun incentive for early teams, provided by sponsor Tim Hortons, is a contest to win, “The Ultimate Tim Hortons Coffee Break” for the group. All teams who are fully registered during the early registration window will be entered into a random draw to win the prize valued at about $800.

To learn more about the festival and how to register, visit