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Dragon boaters keep the speed and fire going

June 20, 2016

North Beach, MD – It was great day to be in North Beach and on the Chesapeake Bay. Old-fashioned (think 8th century) speed-boaters drew a crowd and raised big bucks for Calvert County’s battle against hunger. The Saturday, June 18 event was the Fourth annual End Hunger in Calvert County Dragon Boat Festival.
Over 30 teams—each with 19 crew members—competed for trophies in a series of 200 meter races.
At the end, the grand champion trophy was held and hoisted by a team called “High Speed, Low Drag-on,” which bested the crew “Dragon Boat Z.”
The other four finalists—third through sixth-place—were “Wake Busters,” “Thai Paddlers,” “The Corksmen” and the “Corksmen 2.”
“They did all the work,” said High Speed, Low Drag-on” captain Rachel Califf of her winning crew. “They all paddled well.”
“This was the biggest and best yet,” said the Rev. Robert Hahn, senior pastor of Chesapeake Church and CEO of End Hunger in Calvert County. Hahn told The BayNet before the awards ceremony that a total of the money raised by the event was not available but was likely to be well over $50,000. “There’s a variety of ways this event makes money,” he explained. The boat crews pay an entry fee ($2,000 per crew) and vendors also contribute. Corporate sponsors aid the cause by covering the other expenses the event occurs.
During his post-race address at the awards ceremony, Hahn thanked the Town of North Beach for its efforts in making the logistical challenges of such an event a little easier.
In addition to the top six teams, several other trophies were presented. One of them went to “Team North Beach,” which recaptured the Mayor’s Cup a year after losing it to Chesapeake Beach. A boat crew from Exelon, “Just Another Day in Nuclear Paradise,” won the Power Cup from a team representing Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative.
A special acknowledgement, the Hill-Climber Award, was presented to the team “Mussels and Mermaids. The crew overcame adversity posed when one of its mates—Kayla Amos—was killed, along with her husband, in a motor vehicle collision on Valentine’s Day.
Hahn has already announced that the race will again take place next year. When it was held for the first time in June 2013, the End Hunger in Calvert County event was the first dragon boat race ever on the Chesapeake Beach. This year it won’t be the only dragon boat race in Calvert County. A dragon boat race is scheduled for this August in Solomons.
For more information about End Hunger in Calvert County, visit
Contact Marty Madden at

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