For the third consecutive year, our members have assembled a crew of ‘HARC Hydras’ for the Scarborough Dragon Boat Challenge. The squad of 17, plus supporters, enjoyed a brilliant day out at Yorkshire Water Park, paddling against 19 other teams, all raising money for their chosen charities.

HARC paddled on behalf of Dementia Forward, a charity which provides support and advice for those living with dementia across North Yorkshire, helping them to live well and stay connected with their communities. So far, the team has raised £651 via their fundraising page. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to that super total. If you’d like to add to this, you can still make a donation here:

The event was initially blessed with sunny weather as the teams gathered on the lakeshore. The HARC Hydras took part in three races, each comprising four boats, with two second place finishes and one third. This placed them mid-table by the end of the competition, by which point there was heavy rain added to the fun!

Polly Oldacres, our drummer, had the job of keeping the paddlers in sync and chose to keep them motivated with some entertaining pep ‘shouts’. She said, “As well as an adrenaline-pumping paddle in the heats, I was also able to sit aloft by the boat’s dragon head and beat the drum to help the rhythm of the crew. It was great fun for me, yelling encouragement. We did have a slightly hair-raising moment as we glided in to the shore a little lopsided and thought we were going to crash! It really is a fantastic, friendly event. If you get the chance to take part, do it – this is not one to turn down!”

We are already hopeful that we’ll be invited back to the 2025 Dragon Boat Challenge to make it four in a ‘row’.

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