MIDDLEBURY - Six Addison County teams are set to compete in the annual Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival. The event, while all fun and games, has a deeper mission - all the watery creativity goes to benefit Vermont's Camp Ta-Kum-Ta for young children with cancer. The races and festival will held Aug. 8, starting at 8 a.m., at Burlington Waterfront Park.
This year's event will attract 72 community teams and four breast cancer survivor teams from the U.S. and Canada. It includes grueling 300-meter sprint races.
The Addison County dragon boat teams promise to provide a lot the action. Here's a sneak preview:
• Champlain Valley Cardiovascular Associates, "CVCA's The Beat Goes On." Captain: Joanne Holden.
• Country Home Products, "DR Power Paddlers." Captain: Karen Colvin-Rathbun.
• Danforth Pewter, "Danforth Lionhearts." Captain: Lauren Taddeo Miller.
• Friends and Family Team, "Draggins of Monkton." Captain: Suzanne Bushey.
• Goodrich Corporation, "Sync or Swim." Captain: Tara Bruss.
• Porter Hospital, "Porter Draggin' Tails." Captain: Deb Jordan.
According to Dragonheart executive director Linda Dyer, the Addison teams are "made up of friends, families, and co-workers who have joined together for this charity event. Teams dress up in wild costumes and perform creative team cheers and songs."
Dyer noted Addison County's enthusiasm for the festival has been phenomenal.
"It speaks volumes about the generosity of the people in Addison County who give to this event by racing, volunteering, sponsoring, and donating to our cause. It makes me feel blessed to be a part of our Vermont community," she said.