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Below is a list of FAQ’s by participants or those considering participation in the Charleston Dragon Boat Festival. 

What is the date of the festival? – May 5, 2018.  Approximately 8am to 4pm.

Where is the festival? – Brittlebank Park, off of Lockwood Dr.

How much does it cost to participate – Each team pays a registration fee of $850.  Additionally, each paddler commits to raising $50 through his/her network of friends and family.   Paddlers who raise $100+ will receive a medal.  The victorious team and individual who raises the most money wins glory, accolades, a trophy and free registration the following year.

Teams that raise over $2,500 get all kinds of perks, ie. choice of tent location, early registration, love, etc.

What does registration include:  $850 registration pays for 2 practices (April 23 to May 4), a 10x10 tent at the festival, lifejackets and paddles and steersperson.  It does not include tables.

How does a team pay registration?

A team can pay their registration one of three ways:  1) pay the $850 fee online via credit card, 2) pay with a check within two weeks of registering (address below), 3)  Each paddler can pay their portion of the registration via credit card on the website ($42.50 per paddler based on 20 paddlers).

Captains!!!  Please communicate with your team about registration.  It gets confusing when you pay your team registration up front, your paddlers don’t know that, and then they proceed to pay their individual registration online. 

To whom should checks be made out:  Dragon Boat Charleston or DBC

What is your Tax ID# - 32-0253953

What is the DBC address – 1643 Savannah Hwy. #261, Charleston, SC 29407

Will donors receive acknowledgement of their gift? All online donors will receive an automatic thank you note with tax information via email.   If the donor sends a check, he/she will receive a postcard thank you acknowledgement (for gifts over $25).  If you receive a cash donation, you can email Meagan the name/amount and address and a thank you card will be sent.

Deadline for cash/check donations – When you receive check donations, record them in the website and send them to DBC, 1643 Savannah Hwy. #261, Charleston, SC 29407 by April 11.

All checks and cash received after April 11 should be turned in the day of the festival.  

Can teams bring grills, picnics, etc. – Yes, teams can bring grills, food, drinks, etc. to the race venue.  No large coolers.   There are food vendors at the festival.  Grills must be placed in the nearest “grilling area” to your tent.

Is there a cost to spectate?  - No, the festival is free of charge for spectators.

Team make up – Mixed teams must have at least 8 women.  Teams should have 20 paddlers and 1 drummer, but it is recommended to have alternates.  All paddlers must sign a waiver online or a paper waiver.

The Charleston Dragon Boat Festival is a community competition for amateur paddlers to raise money for cancer survivor programs.  To keep things fair, each team is allowed only 2 traveling paddlers.  Traveling paddlers are defined as, 1) individuals who regularly practice/d with a club team, 2) individuals who have participated in races, 3) anyone who has attended a paddling clinic/camp.  This rule does not apply to cancer survivor teams.

How do practices work? – Once your team has registered and paid the $850 fee, you will be sent a sign-up link.  You will choose two practices from the available list.  All paddlers are required to attend at least one practice.

If a member of your team cannot attend any of your team practices, he/she can just show up (no need to call ahead) and jump in another team’s practice.

Drumming Clinics  - All teams much have their own drummer.  We will offer 2 drumming clinics at 5:30pm on 4/25 and 5/2.

Drop off and Set up- We ask that you drop off as much as possible the afternoon of Friday, May 4.  There will be overnight security.  It makes the morning of the festival much easier.

Tents – all teams will receive a 10x10 tent.  Only sponsor teams and high fundraising teams have the option for a 20x20 tent.   Tent locations are based on fundraising levels from the previous year.  Teams that raised over $5,000 have preference.  YOU HAVE TO BRING YOUR OWN TABLES/CHAIRS.

Awards – awards are given to top fundraising team and top individual fundraiser.  Awards are also given out for best tent décor, best team t-shirt and overall team spirit.  Have fun with it!

Weather – Festival and festival practices are rain or shine.  In the case of high winds and/or lightening, all water activity will be cancelled.  A “weather hotline” will be set up in time for practice weeks. 

What does the money raised go toward? – All of the funds raised by the festival go toward the cancer survivor programs of Dragon Boat Charleston.  These funds allow survivors to participate FREE OF CHARGE in year round paddling, to participation in festivals around the country, and our fitness and nutrition programs like yoga, cross fit and even shag dancing.  For a complete list of accomplishments go to and click on News & Accomplishments or go to the festival site, and click on How do donations make a difference. 

The City of Charleston Police Department has requested that we tighten our alcohol policy for the festival.  You will not be permitted into Brittlebank with HUGE coolers full of alcohol.  No hard alcohol allowed in park.  No paddling while intoxicated or risk forfeiture.   Captains will be responsible for ensuring the sobriety of their paddlers. 

RACING – Your team will race three times.  It is a 250 meter course.  You can paddle “light” with as little as 16 people, but it is not recommended.  All paddlers must be over the age of 14.  Mixed teams must have 8 women.  All paddlers must be sober.  You will not know exactly what time you are racing.  The schedule for the first heat won’t be emailed out until Friday, May 5. 

Tent Map – DBC will post the tent map on the festival website by  May 1.  


1643 Savannah Highway, #261, Charleston, SC 29407

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