Massive International Dragon Boat Festival glides into Tampa

The Tampa Bay International Dragon Boat Festival sails into Tampa on Saturday, April 27. The event serves at the Junior League’s signature fundraising event that also promotes health and wellness across the region.

Tampa’s Garrison Channel will be rocking with paddlers vying for first place while Cotanchobee Fort Brook Park will be bursting with food trucks, live music and local vendors.

Tampa Bay International Dragon Boat Festival

Festival week is FINALLY here! We can’t wait to welcome paddlers and spectators this Saturday, April 27th at Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park behind Amalie Arena on Tampa Riverwalk Wondering what to expect? Check out the video from last year! #JLTampaPaddlesUp #JLTampa #TBDragonBoatFestival City of Tampa Government

Posted by Tampa Bay International Dragon Boat Festival on Monday, April 22, 2019

More than 5,000 attendees expected for event

The 2018 inception of the event drew more than 5,000 spectators and participants, according to the Junior League, and they’re expecting an even larger turnout in 2019.

All proceeds from the Dragon Boat Festival will support the Junior League’s community projects and advocacy programs throughout the state of Florida.

Operating these boats is no easy task. It takes a team of 22 to glide on the water: 20 paddles, one drummer and one caller. No worries, the vibrant dragon boat is provided by Pan Am, as is the the caller on the boat.

Fun fact: A classic dragon boat has the head of an ox, antlers of a deer, the mane of a horse, the body and scales of a…

Posted by Tampa Bay International Dragon Boat Festival on Thursday, March 7, 2019

All skill levels welcomed to join in on the race

All skill levels are welcome, and teams and individual paddlers will be placed in skill level-appropriate racing divisions, according to the event website.

Teams will participate in three races taking place from 8:30am-5pm on Saturday. Listen, you don’t have to get out and paddle to enjoy this athletic spectacle. It’s for a great cause and if nothing else, you’ll get to nom on food from your favorite Tampa food trucks.

Registration runs $100 for an individual paddler, or $1900 for a dragon team boat.

Click here for full details on the event.

Written by Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan is the Editor of Follow him on Twitter @harlanyoungII and Instagram @harlanyoung. Send tips and potential stories to