For the past two years, Severn Hospice has been unable to hold any of its flagship events, including the hugely popular Dragon Boats event, due to the pandemic.
Now the boats have been ordered and the venue booked for the charity’s fun event, which will take place the weekend of July 23-24, at the Pengwern Boat Club in Shrewsbury.
In previous years, thousands of people have flocked to the banks of the River Severn in Shrewsbury to watch the spectacle which sees up to 60 teams don fancy dress and take the plunge – competing to be the fastest rowers faster.
Using specially designed boats, which have dragon heads at the prow, a drum keeps the rhythm with the strokes of the oarsmen.
Area Severn Hospice fundraiser Matthew Dix-Williams said: “We have waited and waited to put on the Dragon Boats event again.
“We were so disappointed to have to cancel it and all of our fundraising events due to Covid.
“But we are convinced that despite the current uncertainty, the situation will have changed this summer and we will be able to organize our Dragon Boats event again.
“The setting will be great, lots of fresh air and open spaces and we know how much everyone enjoys being there.
“There’s a great feel – everyone is there to have fun although the competition is fierce. In previous years we’ve had some amazing costumes, from pirates to superheroes.
“The goal of the weekend is to bring local businesses, individuals and families together for a unique and memorable experience they will remember for years to come.
“Dressing up, community spirit and friendly competition really come together to create a fantastic day.”
Severn Hospice provides care and support to thousands of people living with terminal illness.
She relies on donations, bequests and fundraising to pay for the care she provides. During the pandemic, its events and fundraisers have been canceled while its stores, which bring in around £1million a year, have been forced to close.
Mr Dix-Williams added: “It’s a brilliant and fun event and every penny raised supports the lifesaving care we provide.
“For every £1 given to us last year, we spent 83p on care and then used the remaining 17p to raise another £1. Every year we care for 3,000 families in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin and Mid Wales and this wouldn’t be possible without our incredibly loyal supporters.
“We can’t stop caring about ourselves. Our care is still there, and we are proud to be able to provide it to anyone facing heartbreak. Events such as Dragon Boats are a perfect way for us to raise vital funds and, at the same time, increase our visibility in the local community.
Early bird discounts are available for registrations and for more information on corporate packages contact the association’s fundraising team on 01952 221351 or email [email protected] org.uk