University of Liverpool Confucius Institute hosts dragon boat racing contest

The University of Liverpool’s Confucius Institute hosted the 2024 North West England University Confucius’ Dragon Boat Festival Race at the Liverpool Watersports Centre.

Dragon boating is a fast-growing sport which involves paddling a large canoe style boat with 20 other people plus a drummer on the front and the helm that steers the boat at the back.

On Saturday 27 April, University of Liverpool, University of Manchester, Edge Hill University, University of Lancaster and UCLAN all attended the festival and competed in the race. The festival is a holiday celebrated in China and by Chinese communities around the world to mark a celebration of loyalty and family relations.

The University of Liverpool team

The festival was opened by a vibrant ‘Dragons’ Eye-Dotting Ceremony’, a practice that breathes life into the dragons, preparing them for the competition ahead and a traditional lion dance.

After a tightly fought race, University of Manchester won the gold, University of Liverpool secured the 2nd place, and University of Central Lancashire took the 3rd place, followed by Edge Hill in 4th and Lancaster University in 5th.

This year’s event also marked the 15th anniversary of the University of Liverpool Confucius Institute, which works collaboratively with councils in Liverpool and Merseyside, schools and a number of cultural organisations to promote Chinese language and culture.

Dr Penny Ding, Deputy Director of the University of Liverpool’s Confucius Institute said: “It was great to see all five teams coming together on Saturday to celebrate Chinese culture and one of our oldest traditions and festivals.

“I’d like to thank everyone who attended – university staff, students and members of the Chinese community who came down to spectate and compete in the race. Thanks also to Amathus 4 Dragons and the team at Liverpool Watersports centre who hosted us.”