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Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago celebrate dragon boat festivals

HKETONY Director Steve Barclay speaks at the dragon boat races in Philadelphia on June 4.

Paddlers, in synchronized fashion, raced toward the finishing line at dragon boat races held in Philadelphia, Boston and Chicago in June to celebrate the traditional dragon boat festival. The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, New York (HKETONY) was the sponsor of the three races.

More than 80 teams participated in 60 races during the Independence Dragon Boat Regatta held on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia on June 4, while 69 teams from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Texas, New York, South Carolina and Toronto competed in 61 races during the 37th Annual Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival along the Charles River on June 12.

In Chicago, the Dragon Boat Race for Literacy at the Ping Tom Memorial Park on June 25 also drew thousands of spectators, who enjoyed cultural performances, a games booth and the dragon boat races. The HKETONY team, “We Love Hong Kong,” competed for the championship against 29 other teams. The HSBC Red Dragons, another team with strong links to Hong Kong, grabbed first place.

The largest dragon boat festival in North America – the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in New York, sponsored by HKETONY – will take place in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens, N.Y., on August 6-7. 

Dragon boats race on the Chicago River on June 25.

Young dragon boat enthusiasts show off their temporary tattoos at the Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival on June 12.

Volunteers work the HKETONY booth at the Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival.


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