Penticton Golden Dragons

Who are we? The Penticton Golden Dragons club is dedicated to enjoying the experience of being on the water, the physical activity of paddling a boat, competition of races and the sociability that comes with participating in a team sport. It should be noted that there is room in our club for the recreational paddler as well as those wishing a higher level of performance. This is the eleventh year the club has been in existence. As a club member you have the right to vote and participate in decision-making. Members contribute to coffee and snacks that are provided after each practice.

Who is our coach? Coach Brad Crittenden is returning for a seventh season with our club. He has coached winning dragon boats teams and brings a wealth of experience that he will share with our members.

Who can join? We do not have age restrictions. However, in some races such as the BC Senior Games, you are required to be at least 55 years of age in the current year to compete.

When do we practice? Our practices are on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 9 to 10:30 at Skaha Lake starting in May. You should be at the Skaha Lake boathouse by 8:45 so that practice can begin promptly. All paddlers must sign a waiver form before going out the water.

What does it cost? Our annual fee structure is $135 for one practice a week, or $190 for two practices a week. It has been customary to not charge for the first two free “try-out” practices. After that, the individual would either pay their full membership or decide it was not for them.

Do we enter race events? Last year we entered a women’s team and a mixed team in the inaugural Senior Super Sprints event in Penticton as well as the annual Okanagan Super Sprints the following day. Our team also participated in the Vernon Dragon Boat Festival in August and the Penticton Dragon Boat Festival in September. Participants in racing events share the entrance fees, which may range from $15 to $50 per person depending on the number of paddlers who sign up. Participation in the BC Senior Games(being held this year in Vernon) is around $100, not including travel and accommodations. Paddlers who register for two practices a week will have first choice to be on a race team; the remaining seats will be made up of those signing up for practice once a week. Members will be expected to indicate their interest in participating in this year’s potential events at the spring BBQ.

What do you need for equipment? Paddles and life jackets are provided. However, paddlers may bring their own CSA-approved life jackets and paddles if they meet standards. Water bottles are a necessity. Remember this is a water sport and you can get wet. Cotton clothes are to be avoided, as they don’t dry quickly. Wear water shoes (e.g. sneakers, sandals, deck shoes, Tevas). In early May, dress warmly. Members are expected to buy a team jersey for the races.

Contact Penticton Golden Dragons:

  • Randy Williams, President
  • Suzanne Tining, Vice-President
  • Faye Oliver, Treasurer
  • Bonnie Bodtker, Secretary
  • Helen Sparkes, Team Manager
  • Rene DeWaal, Equipment Manager
  • Elaine Thompson, Festival Coordinator

To contact our team . . .