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low-impact, full-body workout. Practices are held year round and only snow, ice or heavy fog stops the show. Donna Zeller, one of the group’s newer members, attended her first practice in February of 2013. She was on a third date with Mike Grove, a three-year member of the Seattle Flying Dragons. It was dark, it was cold, and Zeller was a non-swimmer. “I was scared,” said Zeller, “but now I really enjoy it.” Both Zeller and Grove were part of two teams that represented the Seattle Flying Dragon Boat Club in the 2013 Kaohsiung Dragon Boat Festival in Taiwan. In late 2012, the Seattle-Kaohsiung Sister City Association received an invitation from the Kaohsiung City Government to send a dragon boat team to the competition. Two teams were recruited by the Seattle Flying Dragon Boat Club, resulting in a mixed team of 12 men and eight women and a women’s team of 12 women. Some were experienced paddlers, many were new to the sport. The Seattle teams flew to Taiwans’s second largest city of Koahsiung in June of 2013, where they participated in the five-day international competition and cultural exchange. They were the only teams representing the USA out of 135 (Top to Bottom) Seattle from around the world. Flying Dragons have An estimated 40,000 introduced more than people watched the colorful races from the 5,000 new paddlers shore. In the end, the Seto the sport. Fong Ng. attle mixed team placed Boats are decorated third overall in internawith ornate dragon tional “traditional boat” heads and tails. racing category, which earned them $10,000NT ($337.20USD) in prize money. They donated it to a Kaohsiung middle school to be used for programs in international relations. The women’s team placed sixth in international traditional racing out of nine teams. Back at home, the paddlers on Lake Union range in age from 14 to 87. Although there’s a minimum age of 18, youth 12 and older may paddle when 60

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HARBORS Fall/Winter 2013  

The Seaplane and Boating Destination Magazine

HARBORS Fall/Winter 2013  

The Seaplane and Boating Destination Magazine

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