Gosh, where do we start?

So much has been happening and its all good!

State Championships–place getters in a major regatta (3rd). Overall our times improved on previous years, but best of all paddlers stayed with the race plan and were able to give that little extra toward the end of each race – even the 6th, (you realise that was more than 3km we paddled.) Will we enter the 2km race next year?

What were the contributing factors to the best performance we have ever put in? It must have had something to do with the 500g we collectively lost!! Seriously–paddlers put in huge effort with more training sessions, more intensity. You did all I asked of you and I didn’t hear one complaint – what you said out of my hearing was something else again!!

Juniors – Not forgetting the huge effort they′ve put in. Bella took the role of drummer for first time at a regattar, while Hayden, Taylor, Alex, Megan and Elise were instrumental in taking the Torpedoes to hard won places.

National Championships – again 5 of our Juniors proved their metal in Canberra this last weekend, taking out 5 Bronze medals – including one for the 2km race.

Great effort all of you. The Torpedoes, a composite team from Port McQ, Coffs, Grafton and Orange were competing against teams like Snowy Mtns and Canberra Grammer schools, all of which have had dragon boating as a school sport for some years. Just what would our young people do if we could take a full junior team to regattas?

Fundraising – now in earnest. It’s a race between Bella and Elise as to who sells the most chocolates. Another order has arrived so if you can sell some see Gail

  • Raffles at the Ophir Tavern under way, not too late to add your name to the roster – or come along about 3ish to give moral support to the ticket sellers – especially this weekend cos’ its me!!
  • Barefoot Bowls – last Saturday was so good theres talk of it becoming an annual event. The locals had great time teaching some of our members to play. The ‘ditch’ had a good workout!!. Canowindra Bowling Club generously donated the green fees to DA Orange, which expanded the coffers by $415. Big thanks to Sandy for organising it – and giving some impromptu demonstrations of paddling technique. There is deffinetely growing interest in dragon boating coming from Canowindra – so hopefully Sandy will have some company on the trip over for training.
  • Sound of Music – 06th May. Opening Night Tkts cost $39 adults, $25 Jnrs. Our allocation of tickets will be open to general public from tomorrow, so if you haven’t got yours yet, better contact me fast to get a good seat.

There’s more events to come – more next month.

Boat Purchase – its been ordered, the deposit paid – now all we have to do is find the rest of the money before delivery in June/July!! Hence all the fundraising, The Committee are looking at other ways to meet the outstanding amount plus a couple of members have said they are willing to provide interest free loan if needed.This is something you too might like to think about, it will only be used as a last resort.

Boat Trailer – The road ready one I mean. Phil is completing plans and costings, we had very encouraging discussions with couple of business houses which will take costs down dramatically. Kaye’s dobbed husband Mark in to do the welding, tho if hes looking for help, Tracey has dobbed husband Steve in, not sure if Steve knows this yet.

It will be so good to be able to head out west to train somewhere warmer during the winter months – we have to get fit fast next season, we’ve had a 2nd, now a 3rd , 01st is the only way to go!

Winter Training – Lots of discussion on this topic. Usually with end of daylight saving midweek training ceases – however some are asking if we could start training at 5pm – while this glorious weather lasts, at least. Need your input – a survey will be going out with this n/letter.

Saturday Training – deffinetely 7.30am until further notice (in past years we have gone to 2pm Saturdays only when morning temperatures drop).

Totally Local – the everyday Farmers Market just out of town on the Mitchell Hwy has given CCDB Club 40 black caps, complete with CCDB and DA Orange embroidered on. At last we can all be wearing the same headwear. Check out the web site.

Volunteers – CCDragons have been highly visible helping at regattas this season. Recently Kristy, Leanne and Issy were at Shellharbour with tides and weather making for an interesting day. Issy and Pam have been in Canberra volunteering at the Nationals. This is a great way to get to know dragon boaters from other clubs, what goes on behind the scenes and it’s a lot of fun – ususally. Ask George, he was boss boat aligner at the Corporate Championships at Penrith, it rained ALL day and theres no shelter out on those pontoons, I didn’t get wet at all in the Marshalling tent.

Sweep training – Thank you to all those who have turned up for these sessions, Sweeps are a vital part of the Club. We seem to be the only club that has ‘Sweep Training Days’, in most clubs the sweeps have to learn on the job, which is fine but it is helpful to trainee sweeps to have the opportunity to focus entirely on their role and experiement. We all benefit in the long run. Jasmine will be going solo at first opportunity and I’m told the Bathurst trainee sweeps were very happy to have some help. There are some disadvantages to being a regional dragon boat club – but I wouldn’t swap with a metropolitan club!

Paddle Order – I know its end of the season but I’ve had several people asking about getting the carbon paddles. To get the discounted price, plus your name, plus the coloured blade (orange) I need to place minimum of 10. Price to us: $168 (if you buy individually I think they are $180, or close to). I think the bags are still $50, could be $55. Let me know ASAP if you would like to place order, need to measure up for length.

Blokes, Boats, Babes and Barbeques ­ – To celebrate so many good things that are happening in Colour City Dragons. Sunday 1st May.

The challenge is out there – Men versus the Women race, the women using the boat with the foot blocks and a 4 boat length start – haven’t decided whether the men should have the sea anchor out!!

Then we’ll have the members partners and friends racing against the members – handicapping the members of course! The losers cook the barbeque!

We will have table set up with all our awards on display – to inspire us to better things next year. This may also be opportunity to get thank those who have helped us with sponosorship, materials and other assistance.

Sunday pm is also an option – check the survey – let me have your thoughts by MONDAY 11th so decisions can be made.

Cheers

Pearl

But wait, there’s more!!!!!

The boat yard about to become a boat shed. Phil Lambert has been heading up a team of members preparing the yard in readiness for the roof to be put on this Sunday. Kaye’s husband, Mark made posts, Ian organised the post hole digger, George, Warren, Brian were there to dig, scrape, fill, hammer and do whatever else was needed. Yvonne and Jo Keniry were seen lifting panels and holding them in place while the blokes fastened them in – the panels, not Jo and Yvonne – tho the latter is pretty handy with the screwwdriver too. Then there were all those members keeping the food and drinks up to builders – and Jan Richards makes a chocolate slice to die for!

There is so much that goes on in Colour City Dragons, often with little or no comment. Did you notice early Jan – the 2nd boat was much in demand, it was almost impossible to move on the little trolley – until Ian quietly put a stronger axle on – it’s a breeze to move now.

Remember those fantastic brochures promoting our Regatta, same person just produced the information brochure (for new members) and the abbreviated version for promotional purposes – take a bow Jo Keniry. Alan Reeder, Karen’s husband produced flyers at short notice to promote the Come and Try Session taking place as part of Slow Summer program this week.

Have you checked out the Club website recently? After an inactive year it is now updated regularly. An expert with the camera is now taking the ID photos and while the Western Region Regatta 2011 is still 9 ½ months away work has already begun to encourage business houses in Orange to enter teams – all this is thanks to the Web, Word and Camera Witches, Jan Richards, Jasmine Vidler and Claire Buchanan. And joy of joy – the Constitution – a work in progress for over a year has been handed over to Christine Stanger for a final tidy up – Christine, like Mark Rutherford and Alan Reeder, is not even a Club member – yet!! Heartfelt Thanks to you all.

Trust you’re not feeling exhausted reading about all this activity – because there’s more to come 🙂

This Saturday – the 5th, Come and Try Day as part of the Slow Summer program. Training as usual at 7.15, the Frosties, Community Team will be having their training session at 9.30, this will be followed at 10am by CCDB showing off with a short display – don’t forget to wear your Club shirts – then we’ll be introducing yet more members of the public to dragon boating – I’ve lost track of how many have come along but I think we have had 11 or 12 paddlers new members in January alone and I know there are more waiting till after the Community Team races at CNY. Help will be needed Saturday, especially between 10am and midday, with the boats, the paddlers, the barbeque and the “100 Club”.

Chinese New Year – Saturday 12th for Club teams, Sunday 13th Feb (for DAA and Community teams. Have you found your ID tag yet? No tag No Race – Absolutely no wrist bands will be handed out this year. Paddlers need to be at Cockle Bay by 7.30am at latest for first timers, we try to find a convenient spot to gather, we need bagmen/women, they carry the wallets etc while the rest of us rush round looking for missing paddlers. When the final draw is available I will let you know our races – we don’t go on times, always listen for Race Number over the PA. (its very noisy) you need to be in the marshalling area at least 3 races before yours. If you are missing when we head for the loading pontoons – sorry, you missed the boat – literally. There is an 8 minute turn around so no time for waiting for missing paddlers. According to the draft draw our races are well spread out so I don’t anticipate problems.

NOW to the social calendar – First – those staying at the Goldsborough Mort (that’s nearly all of us), there is a swimming pool and gym, the lift is so slow – think its an original used in the wool store days. The apartments have everything you need – including w/machine.

A room has been booked for CCDB Club at the Bridge Hotel for 6pm, that’s a meeting place in a lively hotel – we then decide do we eat there or head to Dixon Street, I’m still waiting to hear from couple of Chinese restaurants – did think of booking a table at the Marigold but tables of 12 only, so decided against that – my decision had nothing to do with the fact that minimum cost was $1350. Anyone know a good Chinese restaurant? Volunteers are desparately needed for CNY, both days, anyone not paddling and would like to help see Pearl.

Officials and Volunteers Training – Pam attended the course recently, not what she expected but found it very worthwhile and looking forward to getting more involved with DBNSW. Its always good to have members with a growing awareness of the rules and regulations.

Now, reflecting on past activities. Barbeque at Bunnings cleared a little over $500, with enough meat left over to stock this weekends ‘Come and Try Barbeque’. Ella was delighted with all the help. Great effort everyone.

DA Orange – had a stand at the Australia Day Celebrations in Cook Park, mainly to highlight breast cancer awareness and our presence in Orange. We ran a “100 Club’, raising $200 – because the winner of the $100 donated it back to us. We do have 42 numbers to sell on the $5 Club which we hope to sell this Saturday at the Come and Try. Why? Because DA Orange have been successful in gaining a grant for $2000 from Orange Credit Union and $700 from Chris Gryllis Real Estate to purchase a marquee. Too late we were advised by Sydney Dazzlers we should also purchase marquee walls. So DA Orange members decided to order them and use the proceeds of the “100 Clubs” to cover the cost of 3 walls. Thoough Phil did have a brilliant idea to recyle the tarps – it turned out it would cost more than buying the new walls.

Leisure Expo – at PCYC Sunday 27th Feb – will need helpers to run the promotional stand – do we have an IT Witch or Wizard who could maybe set up a dvd to run during the show? Any ideas on how to make the stand appealing.

Fundraising/socialising heaps of activities in the pipeline–just waiting for you to offer to help – everything from Car Boot Sales to Theatre Nights and Dinners. Come to next meeting to learn more – hasten to add these are winter projects.

Training this Sunday (6/2) again, 5pm for the CNY team. This training time will continue for those attending the State Finals – don’t forget EVERYONE is welcome to participate. If we were sending only the super fit or elite paddlers – well, need I say more. But we are improving and that’s the goal.

Speaking of goals – theres moves afoot for those going to Penrith for the State Finals to lose the weight of a paddler – and no we are not throwing anyone overboard. The idea is, those wanting to participate, weigh in at training. The goal is by State Finals (March 19th) we have between us lost equivelent of average persons weight. Well I reckon the average weight is 50kg!!

All this sounded good – Yvonne and Kristy said that’s no good unless you take waist measurements too, I kind of lost interest at that point – however in the interests of the dragon spirit I’ll give it a go – next week. Lets get this weekend over first. Have a think about joining me.

New Club Shirts – those going to regattas, do you have one? Have all shirts been paid for? Old Club Shirts – I still have couple left – a bargain at $20, a size 12 and a small mens (would fit a size 12 or 14 ladies)

A big thank you to all of you – the last few weeks have been so hectic, not just with the number of members turning up for training but so many people trying it out. In case you hadn’t noticed – we have had between 25 and 39 consistantly for the last month. And yes I did hear Phil Lambert mention a THIRD boat! Don’t ask me how but we have managed to maintain the training plan for the ‘older’ members AND help the newcomers to develop their technique.

The Shellharbour Festival of Sport is on March 5. A real fun regatta – if you enjoyed Ryde, you’ll love this one – and we have two Level 2 Sweeps needing to sweep at 2 more races (without incident) to gain their L3 status. Name on the clipboard if your’e interested.

Heaps of positive thoughts to Terry for a speedy full recovery – we miss you Terry.

And soon after CNY we say farewell to Gloria who will be returning to her home in Canada. You have just become part of the Colour City Dragons and we are going to miss you Gloria. Travel safely and come back soon.

Paddles Up!

Pearl

$10 steaks and time to relax – this Tuesday after training – at the Hotel Canobolas – just turn up, no need to rush home and shower and change – we’ll look quite clean compared with the mining guys.