CORN­WALL WATERFEST

DRAGONS on the CANAL

Seaway News - - Front Page - SHAWNA O’NEILL shawna.oneill@tc.tc

CORN­WALL, On­tario – Team Sigma Point has been prac­tic­ing hard in the St. Lawrence River to pre­pare for the up­com­ing Corn­wall Waterfest on Aug. 11.

Ac­cord­ing to Kevin O’rourke, a nine-year Com­mit­tee Mem­ber of Corn­wall Waterfest, there are cur­rently over 20 teams reg­is­tered, and four of them are com­ing from out­side of the re­gion.

He be­lieves that the dragon boat races of­fer phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, team­work skills and a lot of fun.

“Be­cause you’re go­ing to boat with 20 peo­ple, pad­dling in sync is crit­i­cal,” said O’rourke. “Miss­ing pad­dle strokes slows the team down a bit; they lose mo­men­tum and a straight line.”

On the day of Waterfest, races will oc­cur in three dif­fer­ent di­vi­sions: com­mu­nity teams, com­pet­i­tive teams and a women’s di­vi­sion. O’rourke noted that this year there is a youth team com­pet­ing, with young men and women from ages 14 to 19. He will be as­sist­ing the youth team dur­ing the races.

“The peo­ple who have the most dif­fi­cul­ties is the ca­noe pad­dlers,” said O’rourke. “( They have) long term ef­fi­cient strokes, but dragon boat­ing is about power and speed, op­posed to a smooth arm stroke. It usu­ally takes one prac­tice to get ev­ery­one pad­dling in uni­son.”

The event will fea­ture ven­dors, a mar­ket­place, crafts and en­ter­tain­ers this year.

“This is the busiest part for me, but that’s what I en­joy, help­ing peo­ple get out on the wa­ter and learn some skills,” said O’rourke.

The race is this weekend. For more in­for­ma­tion, visit corn­wall­wa­ter­fest.ca.

FOR THE REST OF THIS STORY…PLUS AD­DI­TIONAL SN COV­ER­AGE GO TO WWW.CORNWALLSEAWAYNEWS.COM.

Team Sigma Point prac­tic­ing for the dragon boat rac­ing at Corn­wall Waterfest on Satur­day, Au­gust 11. (Shawna O’neill, TC Me­dia).

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