The second of two major dragon boat race events in Metro Vancouver each year, the Steveston Dragon Boat Festival takes place in Steveston Village in August.
Dragon Boat Racing in Steveston Village
The regatta is a one-day festival which in 2022 happens on Saturday, August 20th. That’s the same day as the Richmond Maritime Festival which happens close by on the Saturday and Sunday of the same weekend.
Dragon Boating Location
The Steveston Dragon Boat Festival takes place in Richmond‘s Steveston Village between the Britannia Heritage Shipyard and Imperial Landing. The Britannia Heritage Shipyard is located at 5180 Westwater Drive and Imperial Landing is at 4000 Bayview Street further to the west.
Below is the schedule of events for the 2022 Steveston Dragon Boat Festival.
- 9:00 am – Dragon Boat races begin
- 10:00 am – Food and market vendor stalls open
- 11:00 am – Main Stage entertainment begins
- 12:00 pm – Beer Garden opens
- 3:00 pm – Awards Ceremony
- 7:30 pm – Festival ends
Every year there is live music and other entertainment on the main stage. Below is the schedule for 2022. For the most up to date details visit the Steveston Dragon Boat website.
- 11:00 am – Michelle Kwan, a guzheng musician from Vancouver
- 12:00 pm – Coastal Wolf Pack, a family of Coast Salish performers
- 1:00 pm – Luc LeMans, a young rock and roll musician
- 2:00 pm – Hon Hsing Athletic Club, a traditional lion dance
- 3:00 pm – DJ Gerard, a local artist
- 3:00 pm – Awards Ceremony
Dragon Boat Racing Details
At the Steveston Dragon Boat Festival up to six dozen teams compete in races that are 250 and 500 metres in distance. Each boat has about 20 paddlers plus a steerer and a drummer. 78 teams are competing in 2022.
The cost for participation is about $1095 for women, coed teams and seniors, and $495 for juniors (of 12-18 years of age). Early bird registration discounts are also available most years.
Advice and Suggestions
Below are some tips and suggestions to help you make the most out of your visit to Steveston Village and the Richmond Dragon Boat Festival.
TIP #1: Parking is available starting at 7:00 am for race participants at the T Homma School which is right by the Britannia Heritage Shipyard at 5180 Westwater Drive. The cost is about $5 with proceeds going to the Richmond Food Bank. Spaces are limited so plan to carpool.
TIP #2: Steveston Village is a beautiful and very interesting place. There is a walking and cycling path that goes for miles all along the water and the Britannia Heritage Shipyard is itself a National Historic Site, as is the Gulf of Georgia Cannery located in the heart of Steveston Village. While you’re in the area, get out and explore!
TIP #3: Also taking place in Richmond on Saturday is the Richmond Night Market which costs slightly more than $4 and is located at 8351 River Road not far from the Bridgeport SkyTrain Station. Especially if you’ve never been, and you like markets, it’s worth checking out.
TIP #4: If you want to compete in the dragon boat racing, register well in advance as the event sells out well before race day.