By Joan Ransberry
Lisa Werry and fellow paddlers “left it all on the lake” at the Port Perry Dragon Boat Festival Saturday, June 17.
Once again, the Haliburton Highlands Paddlers came home with hardware, placing second in the Mixed Division “D” to win a Silver medal.
The Port Perry festival was especially exciting for the 38 participating teams. In keeping with the commands of dragon boating, all eyes were in the boat. However, when boarding the boat at the beginning of each race, competitors looked up to the sky: The storm clouds loomed all day. The weather gods sure teased: the sky opened just as the awards ceremony got underway.
The Haliburton Highlands Paddlers didn’t mind getting drenched. “We waited in the downpour for coach Scotty Boyd and race captain Ginny Carmichael to hand out our hard-earned medals,” said Joannie Ransberry.
An especially proud competitor, Lisa Werry had one concern at the end of the third and final race.
“I wasn’t sure if I had enough energy left to get out of the boat,” said Lisa.
Team coach Scotty Boyd was very pleased with the results of the day. “The team did a fantastic job, especially in the last race,” Scotty said. “We had four first-time paddlers. They did a great job.”
First-time paddler Julia Donnelly came away from the race very impressed: “Everything was wonderful,” said Julia. “I had a great time.”
The Haliburton Highlands Paddlers appreciated the efforts of steerspersons Lois Deacon and Lillian Hall and, of course, drummer Jane Boyd.
“It was a very precarious race” said Jane. “I’m just glad my team didn’t dump me in the lake.” Once again, Edna Jamieson gave it her all. “There was lots of spirit from the paddlers, from the coaches and from the volunteers. It has been an amazing day,” Edna said.
The Haliburton team’s focus is now on the next festival to be held in Barrie on Aug. 26.
With a few more paddlers needed for this all-women’s race, a call has gone out to “fill the boat.”
Haliburton Highlands Paddlers chairperson Elli Armstrong is excited to enter the Haliburton team in the Barrie festival. “Last year we walked away with the ‘Rookie of the Year’ award. The Barrie festival is a wonderful venue and promises to be a great day. Let’s fill the boat!”