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Dragon Boat Races Registration Opens

By Casey Cora | April 26, 2013 6:26am

CHINATOWN — Registration is open for the annual Dragon Boat Races for Literacy, the colorful and competitive fundraising races in the Chicago River.

This year’s competition takes place 8 a.m.-5 p.m. July 13 along the Chicago River near Ping Tom Park. The event will feature daylong races, food and performances.

Registration costs $750 per team. Each ornately decorated boat requires a minimum of 16 people and a maximum of 20. Teams consist of paddlers, a steersman or "sweep," a flag puller, and a drummer whose steady drumbeat keeps paddlers in sync.

The deadline to register is June 24.

During each race, a boat must contain no fewer than six members of a single gender, and all team members must be at least 14 years old.

Groups looking to register are encouraged to download forms at the Chinatown Chamber of Commerce website.

Proceeds from the day are sent to to various local groups promoting literacy.