Thousands of people are expected to turn up in Crawley’s Tilgate Park today (Sunday September4) to watch teams battle it out in the St Catherine’s Hospice Dragon Boat Festival.
This year’s free, Under The Sea themed event takes place between 10am to 4pm is expected to be a family fun-packed day out offering a range of attractions as well as the main event on the park’s lake.
There will be range of stalls and games, inflatable activity centre, face painting, super raffle, and a Metrobus activity bus. There will also be a selection of local food vendors onsite and ample parking.
For the race itself, work colleagues, friends and families teamed up to battle it out for the boat race champion title.
Michaela Clements, events fundraiser at St Catherine’s said: “Our Dragon Boat Festival always proves to be a fantastic day for all ages and we can’t wait to return to Tilgate Park.
“We’re really looking forward to welcoming the local community to cheer on our corporate supporters as they race in our Dragon Boats. By coming along on the day, you’ll be helping make sure we can continue to be there to care for terminally ill people in the local community. We hope lots of you will join us for one of our biggest and most exciting events.”
Last year’s Dragon Boat Festival attracted more than 4,000 people to Tilgate Park to witness 33 teams, dressed in fancy dress, race 40 foot dragon boats across the lake in a bid to be crowned champion or best dressed crew. The record-breaking day raised more than £50,000 for St Catherine’s.
This year’s Dragon Boat Festival is sponsored by Edwards Vacuum, Just Retirement and Thermo Fisher. All proceeds from the event will once again go directly to St Catherine’s who last year, provided expert end of life care to more than 2,000 local people across Sussex and Surrey. With less than a third of the hospice’s running costs provided by the NHS, fundraising events like the Dragon Boat Festival are crucial to help the hospice continue to provide its vital care.