PHOTOS: Dragon boats take over Ballina
DRAGONS glittered, smiles shone, drums beat and paddlers roared across Shaws Bay at the weekend as racers from across NSW and Queensland took to the water for the Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Regatta.
Lennox Head-based Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club president Libby Woodbry was all smiles as the event was "blessed with fantastic weather" for its seventh year.
This year's event had up to 14 teams coming from as far as Manly (Queensland) and Port Macquarie to compete.
On Saturday crews hit the water for a few hours of fun in the afternoon and contested a 1km "turn race" and State of Origin race.
The main racing events were contested yesterday with women, men and mixed crews competing in a knockout round of 250m sprints.
Ballina Dragon Boat Racing Team member Leonie Summers said: "It's very difficult and takes a lot of strength which you build. Keeping in time is actually the hardest part; if you don't keep in time the boat doesn't really move."
The team trains three times a week and attends at least six regattas each year.
"It's a really great team sport. It's an encouraging all-inclusive sport for men and women of all ages.
"We've brought a few new team members with us this year and they are really enjoying their first regatta."