In and near Winnipeg. While the Red River Exhibition was nearing its end, other festivities were already in the make in Winnipeg. Some people seem to think that Winnipeg is made out of snow and winter only.
And that the people do nothing else than shovelling snow for fun. Well, I guess that you cannot convince those people if they
don’t want to be convinced. In the mean time, here in Winnipeg, we have all kinds of activities, some indoors, most outdoors.
Alberta Refinery or Manitoba Amusement?
This refinery-like picture is nothing more than the Red River Ex, viewed from a small distance. At that time the sun was setting, as well as the crescent moon.
Sunset on the Red River Ex
It made for a quiet contrast compared to the noise of the RRX we just left. The frogs were croaking like there was no tomorrow. All good to get your nerves back in their usual place after the excitements of the fair.
The next day, there were other festivities, this time on the Red River. The Winnipeg Rowing Club hosted the annual Dragon Boat Festival.
The festival is organised in favour of the Canadian Cancer Society and all proceeds and donations go to this society.
Last minute orders
The dragon boats are equipped with big drums, used to beat the rhythm and thus regulate the speed of the boat. The same way the old galleys of the Romans worked 2000 years ago. Only today all rowers are volunteers, not slaves.
The races were in groups of three teams of 20 people. The fastest wins, of course.
Checking out the competition
There were so many teams during the whole day of rowing that I had no idea who was who in the end. I also have no idea who won the whole day of the races.
A closer look at the boats showed the drums used to beat the speed. They had definitely already been used.
Dressed up and protected from the sun
So, why call this Dragon Boat racing? From the Canadian Cancer Society website we learn the following:
“Originating in China in the 4th century BC dragon boating recognizes the death of a Chinese political poet and statesman Qu Yuan. Repeatedly slandered and prosecuted by the controlling political regime Qu Yuan decided to end his life by throwing himself into the currents of the Milo River. News of his death spread quickly resulting in local fisherman taking to their boats in a vein attempt to save him. For years following the death of Qu Yuan local fishermen carried on the tradition of racing out to the river, over time this tradition has developed into modern day dragon boat racing.”
So there you are. More festivities are planned in Winnipeg, don’t worry about it. I’ll try to be there and shoot them.
Until next time…