The mission of Colorado Dragon Boat is to build bridges of awareness, knowledge and understanding between the diverse Asian Pacific American (APA) communities and the general public through cultural education, leadership development, and athletic competition.
Colorado Dragon Boat, established in 2001, started the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival which occurs annually in Denver's Sloan's Lake Park and has become Colorado's premier multicultural, family-oriented summer festival. The festival had a record high number of attendees in 2019 with roughly 150,000 people enjoying the festival! In the first year the festival had 16,000 people who attended. We are very proud of the accomplishments our non profit has done. Originally a one-day outdoor event, the CDBF has grown into a two-day weekend event offering free culturally diverse programming to highlight and celebrate Asian Pacific performing arts and crafts, cultural customs and cuisine, and competitive dragon boat racing.
We host the only All Asian and Asian American Film Festival in Colorado. Here we are able to share and highlight the amazing contributions of Asian directors, filmmakers, and talent with the general public. By providing more opportunities for Asian cinema to be shown we hope to encourage more Asian and Asian Americans to be take part in the art of cinema.
Colorado Dragon Boat offers a unique professional development leadership program for AAPI youth, ages 21-35. This program focuses on advancing individuals careers and connecting them with the Asian community. We have a specific program that teaches about the bamboo ceiling and how to overcome obstacles that many AAPI individuals face. We pair up our students with mentors who are leaders in their profession and the Asian community.
Residents of Colorado's Front Range communities, the state and beyond continue to have opportunities to be educated and entertained about the diverse people, places, and practices of Asia and the Pacific as the festival celebrates each year.
The Dragon Boat Festival is a wonderful pan-Asian event, which exemplifies the diversity of cultures in our community. Each year, the cultural education, leadership development and team spirit continue to grow. I congratulate you for your successes in making CDBF such a wonderful celebration of diversity and community. I greatly appreciate all of the contributions you make to the Colorado community in general and to the Asian American community in particular.
Kerry Hada, Denver County Court Judge
2009 CDBF Honorary Chair