Gainesville, Aug 5, 2021 – The organizer of the annual Atlanta Dragon Boat Festival has announced cancellation of the 2021 festival due to COV-19 pandemic. This is the second year in a row that the festival has been cancelled.
“There were many factors that led to the decision to cancel this year's festival. When we first made the decision back in May, there had been an ease in restrictions and reports indicated that 1 out of 3 Georgians had received at least one vaccine; however, the numbers still weren't where we wanted them to be considering that the event is attended by 7,500-10,000 people,” said Tracy Barth, Director of the Atlanta Dragon Boat Festival Inc.
“We also examined information posted on the United States Dragon Boat Federation's website regarding COVID-19 dragon boat re-entry. With dragon boats consisting of up 22 people per craft and paddlers having to share equipment (PFDs and paddles), there simply was no way possible to sanitize these items in-between races, as recommended.”
Organizer of the annual festival that typically draws between 8,000 to over 10,000 spectators to Lake Lanier Olympic Kayaking Center are concerned about the well being of fans and participants.
“It was a difficult decision, but we felt it was necessary to ensure the health and safety of our Dragon Boat Festival participants, spectators, vendors and volunteers. We want to bring the festival back when everyone can enjoy the full festival experience as it was intended.”
“We are confident that vaccine rates will continue to increase and we will be back in 2022. We have added a portal for team captains to our website, which is accessible by login. This portal will contain forms, documents, and information that should be shared with their team members. They will also be able to manage all of the names and contact information of their paddlers as well as each team member’s waiver form – which will be completed online.”
Barth is confident that the Atlanta Dragon Boat Festival will make its return in 2022 when the pandemic is under control.
“We are in the process of revamping our sponsorship packages to include some exciting new features and hope to roll those out soon. We hope to open registration late March, early April.”