The annual Lunar New Year, which is often called "Chinese New Year," is coming up on Monday Feb. 8 this year!
The tradition isn't marked in all Asian countries, but the Lunar New Year, or "Chinese New Year" is a cultural celebration around the world, especially among Chinese communities.
The years revolve around the Chinese Zodiac and its 12 animal symbols; 2016 is the Year of the Monkey. If you're a Monkey, you're probably funny, smart and personable. You may be mischievous like a monkey, and love practical jokes. Monkeys are supremely sociable!
Happy New Year to all of CDBF's friends and family!
Mark your calendars and block out the last weekend of July -- the 16th Annual Colorado Dragon Boat Festival will be held
Saturday and Sunday, July 30-31
at Sloan's Lake Park!
Join us for your weekend passport to Asia, with over 100 traditional and contemporary performances on five stages, two Taste of Asia food courts, Marketplace vendors, Asian cultural exhibits and demonstrations, and of course, the thrilling sport of Dragon Boat Racing!
Donate TODAY and you may be helping CDBF receive extra funds from the Community First Foundation. 100% of your donation will go towards CDBF.
The Dragon Chef: Taste of Asia fundraiser presented by MillerCoors and held October 16 was a fun evening and a great success, with Kathy Poland of A Taste of the Philippines voted by attendees as the 2014 Dragon Chef.
The evening was held at the Tuscan Ballroom at the University of Denver, and attendees were able to sample not only Poland's Manok Sa Gata (chicken simmered in coconut milk), a specialty from northern Philippines, Lumpia (eggrolls) and Banana Lumpia for dessert, but also Chinese food from Chef Chong Nguyen, the owner of Coal Mine Dragon restaurant in Evergreen, and Cambodian cuisine from Chef Heng Lim of Woody's Wings and Things in Westminster.
KUSA's Nelson Garcia, who is Filipino, was the emcee for the event, and the T&T acoustic duo performed a set of music accompanied by vocalist Julie Almeira.
As an added ingredient for the evening, MillerCoors’ Mixology was presented for the first time with Asian-inspired flavored beers. People got to enjoy beer like they've never had before: the spicy kick of Coors Dragon’s Breath (with Sriracha Sauce!) and the citrusy refreshment of Coors Pacific Delight, (with limes and pineapple juice).
Congratulations to Kathy Poland, the 2014 Dragon Chef!
Click here for a full photo album of the Dragon Chef event!
Here are the winners of the Dragonteer Appreciation Picture Contest!
Thank you so much to all the participants -- and thank you for volunteering with us this year!
Garrett Stiffler won in the category of most unique picture! Garrett and his wife Jessica helped us on Saturday with the dragon boat races. Thank you, Garrett!
Camilla Rictor won in the category of most creative picture! Camilla and her daughter Abby managed the busy origami booth in Dragonland throughout both days of the festival. Thank you, Camilla!
Balaji Srinivasan won in the category of most committed dragonteer! Balaji and his wife Sheela worked as Festival Ambassadors on Sunday helping our guests with very important information about the festival. Thank you, Balaji!
Congratulations to all the winners in the #CDBF2015 Dragon Boat Races! Here are the final race results:
HONG KONG DIVISION
COMPETITIVE 500 METERS
1st Gold PASCO Fighting Dragons - Philippine American Society of Colorado
2nd Silver Lao Buddhist Temple - Epilog Corporation
3rd Bronze Agua Libre - Denver Language School
COMPETITIVE 250 METERS
1st Gold Lao Buddhist Temple - Epilog Corporation
2nd Silver Agua Libre - Denver Language School
3rd Bronze CSU Asian Pacific Americans Cultural Center
RECREATIONAL A 250 METERS
1st Gold Scorch - Orlando Dragon Boat Club
2nd Silver Mutineers - Mile-High Dragon Boat Racing Club
3rd Bronze CU Denver - University of Colorado Denver
RECREATIONAL B 250 METERS
1st Certificate Spirit of Cambodia - Spirit of Cambodia Cultural Alliance
2nd Certificate Wounded Warriors Team - Adaptive Adventures
3rd Certificate Raytheon Space Racers - Raytheon
1st Gold To Burma With Love - Global Refuge
2nd Silver Mount St. Vincent Nustangs - Mount St. Vincent
3rd Bronze Adaptive Adventures - Civilian Team
1st Certificate Bonfils-Stanton - Bonfils-Stanton Foundation
2nd Certificate TIAA-CREF - TIAA-CREF
3rd Certificate Kaiser Permanente - Kaiser Permanente
1st Gold Lightway Lightening - Lightway at Sloans
2nd Silver CH2M HILL Dragons - CH2M HILL
3rd Bronze Ice Dragons - Self-sponsored
1st Gold Janus Argonauts - Janus Capital Group
2nd Silver Stanley Sailors - Stanley Marketplace
3rd Bronze OCA DragonFlies - OCA
1st Certificate Wells Fargo Got Dim Sum - Wells Fargo
1st Gold CU Boulder Asian Unity - CU Boulder, Phuong Smith/Sterling Real Estate
2nd Silver Paddle 4 Possible - Craig Hospital
3rd Bronze CU Denver - University of Colorado Denver
1st Gold The Denver Foundation StewardSHIP - The Denver Foundation
2nd Silver Wright Row Group - Wright Group Event Services
3rd Bronze Seas the Dragon - Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
1st Certificate Dragon this Boat - PorchLight
COMPETITIVE 125 METERS
1st Gold Lao Buddhist Temple of Denver – Epilog Corporation
2nd Silver Ice Dragons – Self-sponsored
3rd Bronze CU Boulder – Asian Unity, CU Boulder
RECREATIONAL 125 METERS
1st Gold Mutineers – Mile-High Dragon Boat Racing Club
2nd Silver Los Bomberos – Self-sponsored (Colorado Spring & Pueblo)
3rd Bronze Raytheon Speed Demons – Raytheon
NOVICE 125 METERS
1st Certificate Wells Fargo-Got Dim Sum – Well Fargo
2nd Veterans Administration Team – Adaptive Adventures
3rd CH2M Hill – CH2M HILL
Here's some fun trivia about our dragon boat races by the numbers:
Number of Teams 45
Number of practices by teams 94
Number of Heats 77
Number of Protests 2
Number of Reruns 2
Total Sorties (trips out and back) 234
Saturday Sorties 118
Sunday Sorties 116
Total Distance Traveled Round Trip by Boats 77.2 miles
Number of Paddlers Involved 4842
Number of broken paddles 4
Number of Broken Seats 6
Number of False Starts 0
Number of Injuries 0
Number of spin-outs 0
Number of collisions 0
Number of capsizes 0
If you've never been to the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival or watched a dragon boat race is a very cool aerial view of the festival and one of the races early on Saturday (Lao Buddhist Temple won this race):
Here are some videos about #CDBF2015 including stories by local news media:
Great video from CSU's Asian Pacific American Cultural Center race team. This was the first time that CSU APACC competed in the dragon boat races.
Report on CDBF's new Two Days of Anime tent from Planet Cosplay:
Many thanks to Chris Grenard, who shot and edited together this awesome video of the 15th annual Colorado Dragon Boat Festival early in the morning as the festival was getting started at Sloan's Lake Park in Denver. With the Rocky Mountains to the west, you can see that Chris' drone captured the excitement of the dragon boat races, which are one of the elements that makes CDBF so unique!
Thanks again to Chris Grenard!
For our 15th year, the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival is asking some of the people and groups who participate in the festival to share their thoughts in short, 15-second (more or less) videos. We'll one each day, so click "Continue Reading" below and view them all!
Kenny Nguyen, CU Boulder Asian Unity
Here's the 15th video for our 15th year: Dragon boat race team drummer Kenny Nguyen on why #CDBF2015 is an important #AAPI event! Kenny is a member of the University of Colorado Boulder Asian Unity team. For #CDBF2015 there are teams of Asian American students from CU Boulder, CU Denver and Colorado State University in Fort Collins. Denver University's "That One Team" unfortunately is taking this year off, but DU is represented by the Daniels School of Business -- it's great to see so many young people getting into Dragon Boat Racing and enjoying the festival!
Aiko Kimura, Denver Taiko
Aiko Kimura is the leader of Denver Taiko, the accomplished and award-winning Japanese American taiko drum group that has been the rhythmic heart of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival since the very first year. They're a crowd favorite, and they're back again for #CDBF2015! http://denvertaiko.org
Tarika Cefkin, Operations Committee
Tarika Cefkin grew up with CDBF -- she was a performer with Thai Harmony as a child. As she grew up, she joined the festival Operations Committee She later became Operations Manager, and now is back as a volunteer on the Operations Committee. You can see her as a stage actor in productions by Theatre Esprit Asia (TEA): http://www.theatre-esprit-asia.org
Nita Chittivej, Denver Thai Lion's Club
Nita Chittivej is a veteran of Denver's restaurant scene, having opened one of the first Thai restaurants in the area and now operating Chada Thai. She's the current president of the Denver Thai Lion's Club. The Thai Lion's Club serves traditional Thai cuisine at CDBF as a fundraiser for its many community projects including sending toys and bicycles or eyeglasses for children in Thailand, and to provide relief aid for victims of the recent Nepal earthquake. Nita will also be demonstrating Thai cooking at the Explore Asia Stage in Gateway to Asia during #CDBF2015, Sunday from 10:30-11:00 am.
Fanja Rakotonirina, Madagascar Hat Company
Fanja Rakotonirina and her husband Georges Raelisaona operate Madagascar Hat Company, the booth that sells colorful hats and bags at CDBF each year that are made of raffia by craftswomen in Madagascar. The profits go back to their home country, and the couple have built schools and helped villages modernize, and have also worked to preserve Madagascar's rainforests. Fanja is passionate about her mission to help Madagascar -- you can tell from her TEDx talk she gave earlier this year in Madagascar's capital, Antananarivo: https://youtu.be/QPmvEK1xX7U
Bob Nelson, Mutineers paddler & Race Committee member
Bob Nelson is a member of CDBF's Mile-High Dragonboat Racing Club and one of the race team organizers for the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival. He's s jokester but he shows his love of dragon boat racing year-round with his leadership and his entire family's involvement. Thanks Bob!
Rich Ochiuzzo, Wounded Warriors race team
Rich Ochiuzzo is a Vietnam veteran who's also a veteran dragon boat paddler who's competed for two years before at CDBF. This year, he's an experienced leader of the Wounded Warriors team. It's sponsored by Adaptive Adventures, along with a Veterans Administration team of vets, and a civilian team of caregivers and supporters as well as sight-impaired paddlers.
Sachie Iwaishi, festival volunteer
Sachie Iwaishi is one of the most dedicated volunteers. She organized the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival's Opening Ceremony for several years, but then moved away to her home state of Hawaii. But she has returned to Colorado for the past two festivals to help out with the Opening Ceremonies and other areas. Welcome back, Sach!
Chris Jose, Fox31 and Denver's CW2
KDVR (Fox31) and KWGN (CW2) reporter Chris Jose has been a part of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival as an emcee on the main stage, and especially during the Opening Ceremonies on Saturday at 10 am with Deborah Takahara one of KDVR's anchors. KDVR/KWGN are the festival's TV sponsors and they've been great partners to work with!
Dwight Mark, CDBF performer
Dwight Mark has been performing at the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival since 2004. He's a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who performs rock, blues, folk, country -- just about any style. And, after his first year on the CDBF stage, he was inspired to write "Dragon Boat," which he has allowed us to use as the official theme song of the festival. You can learn about Dwight at http://dwightmark.com and hear the song here:
Andrew Yeh, CDBF Operations Committee
Andrew Yeh is a member of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival's Operations Committee, overseeing the Non-Profit Partners Program and helping to manage volunteers for the event. He's uniquely qualified because he's pretty much done everything having to do with the festival, from paddling on race teams to selling merchandise at a Non-Profit Vendor booth. OK, so he hasn't been a Taste of Asia food vendor. Yet.
Truong An Gifts
Mimi Luong Ye's family store, Truong An, has been part of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival since the first year. It's the huge tent at the festival that has a huge variety of Asian gifts, toys, parasols, and this year, an assortment of anime items. Mimi and her husband Michael are so dedicated to CDBF that they planned their son Landon's birth to avoid the festival's dates! http://www.truongangifts.com
Dae Gee Korean BBQ
Joe Kim's Korean BBQ restaurant Dae Gee (which means "Pig Out") has been part of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival for four years. In that time, he has added a second location at 8th and Colorado Blvd. to his original Westminster location (with a third in the works near downtown), and on Friday July 24 (the week after CDBF) Dae Gee will be featured on chef Guy Fieri's Food Network program "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives." We congratulate Dae Gee for their success and invite CDBF guests to try some homecooked Korean cuisine at the festival! http://daegee.com
Shaolin Hung Mei Kung Fu Academy
Shifu Howie Solow of Shaolin Hung Mei Kung Fu Academy in Boulder is a master of authentic Shaolin kung fu traditions, and one of the original founders of the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival. Shifu Solow and his troupe have performed martial arts demonstrations and lion dances since the very first year of CDBF, and their Dragon Dance and parade is a very colorful special part of CDBF's opening ceremony at 10 am Saturday. Read more about SHMKF at their website: http://www.shaolinhungmei.org
Mudra Dance Studio
Mudra Dance Studio has performed classical and contemporary Indian dance at CDBF for 14 years and this year, the troupe will appear 11 times over the weekend, from the Main Stage to the Explore Asia Stage at Gateway to Asia, the Cultural Unity Urban Arts Stage and Dragonland childrens' stage. Be sure to attend the encore performance of Mudra Dance Studios' 2014 stage showcase performance, "Gyaan," which is a powerful artistic statement on the tumultuous state of the world today, told with exuberant dance, spoken word, visually striking film and images, and emotional content. The performance was sold out last fall; "Gyaan" will be performed again at the Lakewood Cultural Center from Aug. 14-16: http://www.mudradancestudio.us/gyaan/
We still have many volunteer positions available and really need your help!
This year, our "dragonteers" will receive a $7 food token that can used at any of our food vendors during the festival.
Every year the CDBF family counts with more than 300 Dragonteers to make the festival happen! Thanks to generous people like you, every year our community can enjoy this celebration of diversity! Please join us for all the fun!
Wendy Barile and Andrew Yeh