Chattanooga, Tenn. – On Saturday, May 3, dragons and warriors alike will descend on the TVA Park at Chickamauga Dam for a water war like no other. The purpose of this popular Chattanooga boating battle is to benefit Children’s Hospital at Erlanger.
Dating back more than 2,300 years, Dragon Boat racing features teams of 20 paddlers, a drummer and a steerer in 41-foot long Chinese dragon boats, racing through the water to the finish line. Paddlers ages 15 and older at any skill and fitness levels can participate, making it the ultimate team building sport.
For the second year in a row, one of the region’s leading investment firms, Patten and Patten, Inc. is proud to present one of the area’s most exciting events.
“We are extremely grateful and excited to have Patten and Patten, Inc as presenting sponsor, and we appreciate not only their financial support but their enthusiastic participation in the race,” said Yogi Anderson, Director of Development at Children’s Hospital Foundation. “We cannot wait for this year’s event, and I encourage everyone to be a part of this fun-filled day to support Children’s Hospital.”
It is not too late to register for the event. Corporate and community teams are encouraged to register their boat and a fundraising page by going to http://paddleforchildrenshospital.org. Early bird registration lasts until April 1. Boating registration is currently $750 for a company team or $700 for a community team. The last day to register is April 26.
“Thanks to the paddlers’ and teams’ fundraising efforts, the real winners of this event are children who receive the medical care they need at Children’s Hospital,” said Katie Jackson, Annual Giving and Events Coordinator at the Children’s Hospital Foundation.
To better serve more than 40,000 children who come to the hospital this year, participants are asked to raise $4,000 per team or $190 per person in pledges.
“That equals approximately a dime for every child who is treated annually at Children’s Hospital,” said Jackson. “Proceeds go directly to the region’s only Children’s Hospital to help provide the necessary services for sick or injured children in our area.”
Last year, paddlers from 53 teams raised more than $250,000 for Children’s Hospital.
Teams can decorate their tents, wear their dragon apparel and cheer throughout the races. Top prizes will be awarded to the fastest teams and those raising the most money.
Individuals interested in learning more about the event are encouraged to attend a kick-off meeting on Tuesday, March 25 at 5:30 p.m. at Big River Grille & Brewing Works. Race veterans and last year’s rookies will discuss their experiences and share tips on fundraising, team building and making race day a success. The hospital’s 2014 Miracle Children and their families will also be on hand at this kick-off event to share their stories about how the region’s only pediatric hospital made a difference in their lives.