Frequently Asked Questions

for Sport and Breast Cancer teams participating in the Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival

Dates, Team Types and Fees

Date: Racing starts at about noon on Saturday August 3rd and runs through approximately 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, August 4th. Final schedule to be developed when the number of teams competing is known.

What's a Sport Team? A Sport team is a team that practices together regularly outside of this event. Teams that don't meet criteria for a Breast Cancer team (see below) may compete in the Sport Division.

What's a Breast Cancer Team? A Breast Cancer team is comprised 100% of Breast Cancer Paddlers (including the drummer and steer) who practice together regularly outside of this event. The team may be comprised of Breast Cancer paddlers from multiple clubs.

Team/Boat Size and composition: We run standard size boats with 20 paddlers. Teams may compete with as few as 16 paddlers. You must provide your own drummer. We strongly prefer that you bring your own steer. Please contact us if there are issues with your team composition.

Minimum Age: Athletes must be at least 14 years old to participate.

Registration Fee: $1200 per team is due at the time of registration and can be paid by credit card or check. A coupon code is available in our online registration system if paying by check.

Checks should be: 1) made out to Dragonheart Vermont, 2) mailed to 899 Dorset Street, South Burlington, VT 05403, and 3) received by July 15, 2024

Refunds: Entry fees are not refundable.

Since this is a charity event, do we have to fundraise? Sport and Breast Cancer Teams are not required to fundraise. However, if your team raises at least $750 by June 1, 2024, the entire team will receive free Festival t-shirts. If you don't make that goal, then each registered member of your team will receive a coupon for $5 off a Festival t-shirt to be purchased at our DragonMart tent.

Each participant will have a personal fundraising page, even if they don't plan to fundraise. The team will too! Individual fundraising will count toward the team's goal.

How do I register my team? Use the Register link at the left and select Sport or Breast Cancer Team, whichever is appropriate for you. Then choose the Create a Team option, name your team and set your team fundraising goal, provide your personal registration details and check out. We'll send you instructions about setting up your team page and inviting your team members to register. NOTE ABOUT FUNDRAISING GOAL: The registration system requires that you set a minimum fundraising goal of $750 for your team, but rest assured it is not required!

How do team members register? Each team member needs to register themselves in order to sign our Festival waiver. After selecting the Sport or Breast Cancer Team type, click on the Join a Team option and choose the team. Complete the personal details and sign the event waiver. That's it!

Races and Race Venue

Races: Sport and BCP teams will race the 500m distance on Saturday afternoon. If we have enough teams entering, we will have women's and mixed team specific races within the Sport division, along with a single BCP division. Teams will race in the same division on Sunday at the 200m distance.

Registration: We ask that your team be present onsite to register no later than noon on Saturday (you will not need to register again for Sunday's event. Last minute additions to your team must register onsite using our online platform.

How do we qualify for a medal? To qualify for a medal, teams must compete in both the Saturday afternoon 500m races and the Sunday 200m races. Teams are welcome to participate in just one of those race distances, but would not be eligible for Sport or Breast Cancer division medals.

In addition, Breast Cancer teams must be comprised of 100% breast cancer paddlers, including the drummer and the steer. Breast cancer teams that do not meet this requirement may compete for medals in the Sport division or race in the Breast Cancer races knowing that they are not eligible for medals.

Athletes' Village:

  • Each team will be assigned a 15' x 15' space in our Athlete's Village. Sport and Breast Cancer teams will be grouped together. Don't forget to bring your team banner to advertise your club.
  • We do not provide tents for your team, please plan to bring your own.
  • Tents can be set up upon arrival on Saturday. Site security is provided for overnight, but we do not recommend leaving any valuables or easily removed items (like chairs and coolers).

Food and drink: We will have food vendors and a water truck onsite. Our food vendors do not necessarily provide healthy food to fuel your racing. Please bring a refillable water bottle and any food you'd like for the day. No alcohol is allowed in Waterfront Park unless provided by the event organizers in official vending locations.

Charitable Mission

Why do we hold the festival? The Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival is all about coming together as a community to raise money to help cancer survivors in the Champlain Valley. Festival proceeds assist the cancer support programs of Dragonheart Vermont, breast cancer survivor and supporter dragon boat teams, and our Pledge Partner.

Who benefits from the festival proceeds? Osher Integrative Oncology at UVM Cancer Center is our 2024 Pledge Partner. One hundred percent of the donations made to the Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival stay in our community and benefit local cancer survivors through two organizations: Dragonheart Vermont and Integrative Therapies. Dragonheart Vermont is a breast cancer survivor and supporter dragon boat organization that carries on year-long programs to support and empower breast cancer survivors. Our partnership with Osher Integrative Oncology provides financial support for them to offer therapies that help relieve suffering, improve care and quality of life, support healthy lifestyles, and empower cancer patients and families.

Who does the fundraising? Community teams in the Festival commit to raising a minimum of $75 per person toward our charitable mission. Team-based fundraising events count toward that commitment and help to build team spirit and camaraderie. Our top three fundraising teams for the 2024 LCDBF will compete in our “prime time” victory race right after the Flower Ceremony…the Splash for Cash Dash.

We'd love for our Sport and Breast Cancer teams to join in the fundraising, but it is not required. As an incentive, we're offering these teams free Festival t-shirts if they raise $750 by June 1. We realize that's early, but we need to know who has met the goal by then since the t-shirts must be ordered in June!