SALFORD will be roaring on Dragons this weekend as boats sail across the Quays to celebrate Chinese culture.

In its fifth year, the Dragon Boat Festival will see 30 teams from across the North West in brightly coloured boats on Sunday.

University students, local businesses, networking groups and police officers will battle it out on the water in one of the fastest growing team sports in the world (second only to football).

Last year's competitors
Last year’s competitors

David Zheng, organiser and part of the Xinhua Chinese Association, said that it is all about “celebrating Chinese culture”.

He said: “Manchester is such an important city for the Chinese community and we really want people of all backgrounds to come along, learn a little about our heritage and ultimately, enjoy themselves.

“Its origins date back more than 2000 years and as well as watching the races, visitors can sample traditional Chinese recipes that are really special to this festival too.”

The opening of the event will see speeches from representatives of Salford and Manchester City Council and dignitaries from the Chinese community.dragon

Mayor of Salford Paul Dennett said: “Salford is very privileged to be one of the few places in Britain you can see dragon boats racing – and it’s particularly exciting set against the dramatic modern landscape of Salford Quays.

“It’s an exciting day out for all the family, with dressed up Chinese dragons and lions on land, martial arts and a chance to learn more about Chinese culture. I  wish everyone safe sailing and may the best boat win!”
Vibrant giant Dragons and Lions will put on traditional dances and families can watch martial arts and dancing, singing and music displays from children and adults of all ages.

There will be food stalls along the waterfront where people can try Chinese tea and unusual dishes like zongzi, steamed cake and eggs boiled with tea leaves.

The free festival is being held from 10.45am to 5pm at Huron Basin in MediaCityUK, just opposite the Lowry Theatre and Designer Outlet.

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