By Liam Moakes Wednesday 19 September 2012 Updated: 19/09 12:49
WEST WORCESTERSHIRE MP Harriett Baldwin opened Pershore Phoenix Dragon Boat Club's Charity Race Day in aid of Acorns by 'dotting' the eyes of a dragon's head on St George's Field in Pershore on Sunday.
The eye dotting ceremony is a traditional Chinese celebration that is carried out throughout the world to bless boats and paddlers.
The honoree bows three times to the dragon head and 'dots' the eyes with red paint, to awaken its spirit, while saying "awaken, awaken awaken".
Club chairman Geoff Manson conducted the ceremony and went on to thank the teams for coming and to wish them good luck.
Mrs Baldwin said: "Congratulations to Pershore Phoenix which topped the Standard League this year and took part in the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Pageant.
"It's great to be able to open this charity event and welcome the teams."
Competitors and numerous spectators enjoyed the exciting and colourful display on a day that saw keen competition between the 14 teams and some very close races, with some photo finishes.
There was also a lion dancing display by the Kui De Tang Chinese Medicine Clinic and Kung Fu School, music, games for children, stalls and lots more to enjoy.
Trophies were presented by Alan Parfrey, Great Britain coach, and Sharon Wichetts, from Acorns.
The overall winner was Dynamiq from Kinetic, runner-up was Jessie's Warriors and Webbs came third.
A free dragon boat training course for novices aged 14-plus and adults starts on Sunday, September 30 at Arden Sailing Club in Defford, WR8 9BS. Please come along and have a go!
Please contact the club at www.dragonboating.org.uk for further information.
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