The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Coun Geoff Reid will be launching the Bradford Dragonboat Festival for 2017 at a special event in the Mirror Pool of Bradford’s multi-award winning City Park on Tuesday 28 February at 12 noon.
He will be joined by representatives from last year’s winning team, Red Phoenix, paddlers from teams who already signed up to take part, as well as council staff who have volunteered to support the festival in their own time.
There will be three full-size Dragonboats on display in the Mirror Pool for people to get an idea of what the festival will be like.
The festival raises money for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal which this year is raising funds for YoungMinds.
YoungMinds helps children, young people and their parents to find out about the mental health and wellbeing services that are available to them. They also run a helpline for parents worried about the mental health of their children and HeadMeds which is a website about mental health medication for young people.
The Festival which is now in its 3rd year is set to become even bigger and better as it moves to a three day format run over the weekend of 5, 6 and 7 May.
Friday will be specifically for young people and schools and it will be the first of its kind in the UK. The competition will be open to teams of young people aged 11 to 17 (or 25 for people with disabilities). This competition has particular links to the Lord Mayor’s charity YoungMinds, which focuses on support with mental health issues for young people.
Saturday is the main charity day for community teams. Last year 900 people in 45 teams came from across the Bradford district to race in the largest event of its type in the UK. It raised over £43,000 for last year’s Lord Mayor’s Appeal.
Sunday will be a day for corporate teams with the aim of getting teams from large organisations from across the UK to come to Bradford and race.
The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Coun Geoff Reid, said: “The Bradford Dragonboat Festival is a fantastic event. It is delivered by volunteers and is a whole community festival, planned, designed and delivered by the community, for the community, involving the community and raising funds for the community. We still need teams to take part as well as a vast army of volunteers. Anyone interested should please visit the website and register their interest.”
For more information visit www.bradforddragonboatfestival.co.uk