Instead of preparing for regattas, dragon boat enthusiasts have set themselves a challenge of a very different kind this Spring.
Parkes Dragon Boat Club (PDBC) has come up with a great innovative idea to keep dragon boat clubs in the Central West engaged with one another over this period of time where regattas are not allowed, while at the same time raising funds for Cancer Council NSW.
The Western Region have dragon boat clubs at Parkes, Dubbo, Mudgee, Lithgow, Bathurst, Orange, Forbes and Wagga Wagga.
Two PDBC members Beth Thomas and Maggi Barnard set up a virtual challenge of walking to each Western Region town and around each dragon boat club’s waterway, making a total of 1,648 kilometres.
Seventy members from six clubs signed up for the challenge, which started on 1st September. They are covering these distances in record time while benefiting from the online camaraderie and sharing pictures and comments of their walks. The walkers of each club receive uniquely designed online postcards to mark each dragon boat town they pass through on the virtual map.
“What a fabulous idea to engage us all in this activity,” said a participant Rhonda Lang from Dubbo. “It’s so motivating, we just make sure to walk (or maybe run) just that little bit further or that extra day per week. Got to be good for our health and fitness.”
Another participant Robyn Diamond said: “What a wonderful motivator to get us all walking at such a gorgeous time of the year.”
This Saturday many of the walkers will be meeting in reality to walk in Nangar National Park, in accordance with COVID guidelines, and enjoy a BYO picnic together.
At the end of the challenge the clubs are planning to come together once more for a celebration barbecue, kayaking and medal presentation, if restrictions allow.
By Beth Thomas