Naha Harii dragon boat race

Naha Harii dragon boat race

The main boat race thrilled spectators on the final day of the event. At Naha New Harbor Dock on May 5. (Photograph taken by Nagamasa Yakabe)

May 6, 2015 Ryukyu Shimpo 

The 41st Naha Harii dragon boat race has attracted thousands of spectators. Participants paddled on Okinawan dragon boats to pray for good catches and safety at sea. On the final day, May 5, the main race attracted 95,000 visitors, according to the organizers. At the Naha New Harbor Dock, the spectators, including families, enjoyed the boat race and fireworks in the welcoming sea breeze. The total number of visitors over the three days of the event amounted to about 210,000.

Three teams from Kume, Naha, and Tomari competed in the main boat race. Tomari managed to keep its lead from the beginning and won the first prize for the first time in three years. The 38-year old Tomari leader Futoshi Itokazu, smiled saying, “I’m very happy – we had good team work. We will aim for our second straight win next year.”

In the general race Team Kuji Lekio Wing won group A in a record 5 minutes 9.75 seconds, and the Naha Fire Department team won group B with a record time of 4 minutes 54.72 seconds.

(English translation by T&CT and Sayaka Sakuma) 

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