Local paddlers will gather Saturday at the Oak Harbor Marina to honor two late teammates in the best way they know how — in full dragon boat regalia.
Becky Rosencrans, a member of the North Puget Sound Dragon Boat Club, said the group will have its 40-feet-long dragon boat outfitted with the dragon head and tail, and drum. The two teammates they plan to honor passed away in the last year.
Dragon boat racing began 2,000 years ago in China, but the local club has been around for about 15 years. There are two teams. One is called Team Staying Alive and most of its members are from Skagit Valley. Its members are also cancer survivors. Team Tsunami has more members from Oak Harbor and is slightly more competitive, Rosencrans said.
Those wishing to observe the memorial paddle should plan to be at the water’s edge by 9:30 a.m., when the event starts. It will conclude at about 10:30 a.m.