Artist Paul Gibbons spent 500 volunteer hours making the head and tail. Photo submitted

Slocan Lake dragon boat debuts new head and tail

The addition to the dragon boat was crafted by local artisan Paul Gibbons

The Slocan Lake Dark Water Dragons debuted their new head and tail proudly on their “Paddle-by” at Garlic Fest this year.

This addition to the dragon boat was crafted by local artisan Paul Gibbons and generously donated to the group. Since May, 2017, it has taken him over 500 hours to make the dragon head and tail.

Gibbons said, “It was quite a challenge to make the dragon strong but light, and to fit it to the dimensions of the boat, as well as making it easy to take on and off. It was great to see it finally on the water with all the paddlers on board.”

The Dark Water Dragon crew were all thrilled to be part of the inaugural paddle and everyone on the team is very appreciative of Gibbons’ artistic contribution to their boat. A couple of members remarked on how “menacing” we must have looked from the shore.

Paul Gibbons is a Silverton musician and occasional sculptor. Before moving to the Slocan Valley 27 years ago, he ran the Snake in the Grass Moving Theatre, along with Tsuneko Kokubo and Gerardo Avila. This company was the resident theatre group at the UBC Museum of Anthropology for 13 years, as well as touring nationally and internationally. During this time Paul made hundreds of masks, and a variety of sculptural sets.

The Dark Water Dragons usually paddle from May/June to September/October depending on the weather. They are a non-competitive recreational club for both men and women from the local area. They are always looking for new members, so if you are interested in joining the crew, making new friends and enjoying our beautiful lake give Kay a call at 358-7280 for more information.

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