Arlene Chan has written a new book on dragon boating.
Arlene paddles on a Toronto dragon boat team. Susan Humphries is past president of Dragon boat Canada. Arlene wrote a children's book on dragon boating, Awakening the Dragon. This book features chapters on various topics written by top coaches, paddlers, and organizers from across Canada. Vancouver coach Kamini Jain, former Olympic kayaker, has written the chapter on coaching.
Here's a description from Kamini's website
Description: Paddles Up!
provides an in-depth look at dragon boating from its beginnings in
ancient China to the modern-day prominence of Canadian teams on the
international scene, as told in the words of top coaches of men's and
women's teams, experts and enthusiasts, and sports health professionals
across Canada. Contributing writers include Mike Haslam, executive
president International Dragon Boat Federation; Matthew Smith,
president Dragon Boat Canada; Kamini Jain,
Vancouver; Albert MacDonald, Halifax; Jamie Hollins, Pickering; Matt
Robert, Montreal; and Jim Farintosh, Toronto. Through legends, history,
and traditions, to paddling tips and mental readiness, and from
choosing gear to exceptional achievements, a battery of Canadian
dragon-boat notables share their considerable knowledge in one
Last year in June 2008, the author Arlene Chan contacted me. She wrote:
on your amazing Gung Haggis Fat Choy website. What interests me is your
personal passion for dragon boating. The book project that I am
co-editing with Susan Humphries, past President, Dragon Boat Canada, . I'm assembling photos as well as
you're interested, I'd love to get a testimonial from you about what
the sport means to you. The idea is to have about 20 testimonials that
will be interspersed throughout the book. It's not to promote your
team, rather, to let others know how and why dragon boating has been a
passion for paddlers and coaches, like you.
This is what I originally sent to Arlene, most of it is printed on page 27:
can belong to. It might be a competitive team, a corporate team, a
recreational team, a breast cancer team… or a team that promotes
multiculturalism. That's our team. We wear kilts, have lucky Chinese
coins on our team jersey. We eat Asian foods and Scottish haggis –
sometimes combined. It's become more than just being social… It's
become a family.
Here's a picture of the Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team that appears on page 23. This is from the 2007 Vancouver Taiwanese Dragon Boat Race. I am drumming. Emilie is our flag puller learning out over the dragon head. This photo is by my friend VFK whom I introduced to Arlene to be included in the book, as well as photographers Ben Lee and Heather Mclaren – photo VFK
I discovered more about Arlene. She is a librarian with the
Toronto Public Library and had written two previous books, The Spirit of the Dragon: The Story of Jean Lumb, a Proud Canadian Citizen and The Moon Festival: A Chinese Mid-autumn festival.
When she told me she also organized a fundraiser dinner for the Jean Lumb Foundation, I had to ask, “Jean Lumb… the first Chinese Canadian woman to recieve the Order of Canada? I know her daughter, Janet Lumb in Montreal… we met in Ottawa for a conference. I introduced Janet to Sen. Vivienne Poy (the first Chinese Canadian senator) “
It's a small world. Arlene told me that Janet is her younger sister. Back in 2002, I was working for the Vancouver Asian Heritage Month Society. Janet is the founder and organizer of Access Asie, the Montreal version of Asian Heritage Month Festival. Sen. Poy is the patron senator of Asian Heritage Month in Canada, having had it proclaimed in parliament. Sen. Poy's husband Dr. Neville Poy had an aunt in Vancouver… who married my grandmother's eldest brother. “Auntie!” I called her.
You can purchase Paddles Up! on Amazon.ca here:
or contact Kamini Jain in Vancouver