Friday, February 9

Practice sessions: Dow’s Lake 10am-5pm
Team Captains Meeting: HMCS Carleton 5:15pm
Opening Ceremony: HMCS Carleton 6:00pm
ODBF Shiver ‘N Giver Fundraising Races: Dow’s Lake 7:00pm
ODBF Shiver ‘N Giver Awards Ceremony: HMCS Carleton 7:30pm

Saturday, February 10

Race Day! Races will be held on Dow’s Lake between 9am-5pm
Closing Awards Ceremony: 7:00pm BEYOND THE PALE TAP ROOM 250 City Centre Ave Bay 106, Ottawa, ON K1R 6K7

See site map Here.


When is the festival?

The date and times for the Beavertails Ottawa Ice Dragon Boat Festival can be found on the event schedule.

Where can I find more details about the festival?

You can follow us on social media, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube for additional information.

Where can I park?/How can I get to site?

Parking at Dow’s Lake is very limited. We highly encourage all participants to use public transit to travel to the festival site. A detailed route schedule for the area is available on octranspo.ca.  More details regarding parking options are available here.

Where is the festival?

The festival is being held at Dow’s Lake, 1001 Queen Elizabeth Drive, Ottawa, Ontario.

Is there a fee to attend the festival?

Admission to watch the races and attend the concerts is free to the general public.

Will alcohol be served onsite?

There will be no alcohol on site.


Where will everything take place?

The festival is being held at Dow’s Lake, 1001 Queen Elizabeth Drive, Ottawa, Ontario. HMCS Carleton located at 79 Prince of Wales Dr. Ottawa, ON, K1A 0K2 will provide participants a place to warm up between races.

Are there any restrictions as to what can be worn in the boats?

The only restriction is any footwear/footwear accessories that contain ice picks, skates or anything that could potentially damage the boats.

When does the racing start?

Races will take place on Saturday, February 10. Races start times can be found at the Event Schedule. A detailed race schedule will be sent out one week before the event.

How many people are required for an ice dragon boat team?

Teams are comprised of 8-10 paddlers, 1 drummer, 1 steersperson and up to 4 spares. In no circumstance may a team race with fewer than 8 paddlers.

Do I need to sign a waiver?

Yes, all team members are required to submit a completed waiver. Waivers are built into the online registration system and, once completed, includes agreeing to the terms and conditions of the waiver.

Will team members have to wear wristbands?

Yes, teams will be asked to wear wristbands and show them to the volunteers in the Team Staging Area before entering the boats. Only participants with a completed registration (including the event waiver) will receive a wristband.

Will there be any prizes? When will they be awarded?

Medals will be awarded to the top three teams in each division’s Championship Finals (mixed and women). The first place team in each division will also receive a trophy. Medals and trophies will be presented at the Awards Ceremony at the end of the day.

Do I need to be an experienced "paddler" to participate?

No, all levels of paddlers are welcome. Ice dragon boat racing is a very new sport and everyone is still learning.

Do you have any tips for the best paddling technique to use on ice?

Click here to learn more about how to paddle on ice!

What equipment do I need to bring?

All boats and equipment including ice paddles will be supplied.

Where can my team "hang-out"? Can we bring a tent or shelter?

Participants will be able to warm-up between races inside HMCS Carleton. There is no area available to set-up any tents or shelters.

How many races will we compete in?

Each team will race in two races. The number of races is subject to change, dependent on weather and ice conditions.

How many males/females do I need on my team?

Mixed team must race with a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 5 male paddlers (does not include steersperson/drummer). Women’s teams must have all female paddlers, but can have a drummer and/or steersperson of either gender.

When are team rosters due?

A completed team roster must be submitted online by 4:00 pm on the Wednesday before the festival.

Is there a registration deadline?

Registration is complete when all the spots are filled or a week before the event.

Is there somewhere I can put my stuff during the day?

Participants are asked to keep their backpacks and belongings with them at all times during the event as there is no area to store your things onsite. During the races, we recommend participants leave all belongings with a friend or family member.

What should I wear?

Participants should come prepared for the weather conditions. Layers are a great idea so that you can add/remove depending on the conditions during the event. Definitely pack a toque, some warm gloves/mittens, extra socks and a water bottle!

When is the Opening Ceremony?

The Opening Ceremony details can be found on the event schedule.

How long is the racing distance?

The racecourse is 200 meters in length and includes two start/finish lines located at the North and South ends of Dow’s Lake.

Can a participant paddle, steer, or drum for more than one team?

A paddler may be a member of and race for only one team per category. The categories are women and mixed. A steersperson/drummer may steer/drum for more than one team.

Is there a Team Captains’ Meeting?

Yes, check out the event schedule for times and location for the Team Captains meeting.

How old do I have to be to volunteer?

You can start volunteering at the age of 13.  However, volunteers between the ages of 13-17 must submit a Volunteer Waiver form signed by their Parent/Guardian.

How many shifts do I need to do?

We request that each volunteer commits to a minimum of 2 shifts, however, this is subject to change closer to the festival in order to fill specific roles.

Am I expected to show up for all the shifts I sign up for?

It takes a lot of people to ensure a fun and successful festival for everyone involved, therefore we expect that you will be present for the shifts which you have registered.  If there is an emergency situation please contact the Volunteer Coordinator Team or your Volunteer Leader immediately.

Will the festival continue regardless of weather?

Please come prepared for all types of weather as the festival and volunteer requirements will continue cold, snow or sun! If Dow’s Lake is deemed unsafe by the NCC they will shut down the canal and you will be contacted by your Volunteer leader or the Volunteer Services Team with instructions.

What is accessiblity customer service training?

All volunteers must complete accessibility/customer service training before volunteering, as mandated by the province of Ontario. The purpose of this act is to increase awareness and services for people with disabilities. If you have already completed this training, you do not need to complete it again. It is available online at: http://accessforward.ca/front/customerService/ 

What do I need to bring with me to my volunteer shifts?

Volunteers should come prepared for the weather conditions. Layers are a great idea so that you can add/remove depending on the conditions during the event. Definitely pack a toque, some warm gloves/mittens and extra socks.  We do not provide a secure area for personal property.  We recommend bringing knapsacks or fanny packs large enough to carry the items you require for your shift.

What if I need to cancel one of my volunteer shifts?

If you need to cancel your shift before noon on February 1st please email the Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@dragonboat.net. If you have an emergency situation and need to cancel your shift once the festival has started you must immediately notify your Volunteer leader or the Volunteer Services Team. If you need to make a change to your scheduled shift time before the festival please log into Race Roster and select “Edit Registration” for the position on your personal dashboard.

Will I get breaks on my volunteer shifts?

You may not have the opportunity to take a break for a meal during your shift, so plan to eat before or after.

Aside from age, what are the basic requirements to be a festival volunteer?

Most volunteer positions are physically demanding to some degree whether it be standing, sitting, walking, lifting or using tools for extended periods of time.  All roles require some level of attention to detail and require the completion of the Accessibility/Customer service training. Lastly, we have some positions available which require specific knowledge or certifications (ie. Smart Serve, Police Check etc.)

Can I volunteer in more than one section?

Yes! You can register for several volunteer positions during registration. Simply use the “Choose another volunteer position and shift” button during registration.

I'd like to volunteer with my friends. Can we be scheduled to work together?

Upon registration your group should each register for the same area and shift times and let us know in the comments. Please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@dragonboat.net if you have any questions or need assistance.

What happens if I cannot attend the mandatory training session?

There is only one mandatory orientation night that we request you attend.  This is an important night as you will meet your Volunteer Leader, co-volunteers, understand your role, pick up your volunteer package and tour the festival grounds.  Should an emergency arise, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator Team

When do I get my final schedule confirmation?

Your schedule is available immediately after you complete your registration. You can access it by logging into your Race Roster account and viewing your personal dashboard.

Is there any volunteer parking on site?

There is no parking designated for volunteers on site. You can also visit Area Parking for more information.

What is not allowed during my volunteer shift?

Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the festival grounds. Please limit personal cell phone use while on duty, especially when there are tasks to be completed.

Who do I report to?

Volunteers will have a Volunteer Leader to directly report to with any questions or concerns, as well as to check out after a shift.  The Volunteer Village will be for sign-in purposes only.

I have a physical/mental disability. Is volunteering for the festival still accessible to me?

We are happy to have all volunteers join us! Please read the volunteer job descriptions carefully to select which job fits your skills best.

How long is each volunteer shift?

Most shifts are 4 hours long, but shift times may vary.

Can my volunteer time count for high school hours?

Yes! Your volunteer leader would be happy to sign your student volunteer form at the end of each shift.

How do I contact volunteer services if I have more questions?

You can contact the Volunteer Coordinator Team at volunteer@dragonboat.net or by phone at 613-238-7711 x224.

Can I make changes after I have completed my registration?

You may make changes to the shift time for each position you selected before noon on February 1st by logging into your Race Roster account and selecting “Edit Registration” for the position on your personal dashboard. If you need to cancel a shift please email the Volunteer Coordinator at volunteer@dragonboat.net. However, please do your best to stick to the schedule that you have selected.

Do my volunteer shifts include meals?

We are happy to announce that complimentary meals and refreshments will be provided to all volunteers for each shift worked.

Is there a dress code for volunteers?

All volunteers will be issued a festival item that will identify you as a volunteer during your shift(s).

When is the volunteer orientation?

See the event schedule for dates, times and location.

Is there a fundraising component in this event?

Charitable fundraising has been a part of dragon boating in Ottawa for a very long time and our new ice event is no different! The ODBF Shiver ’N Giver Fundraising Drive will raise funds for the local charities supported through the Ottawa Dragon Boat Foundation (ODBF).

How much has ODBF raised in the past?

To-date, over $5.5 million; has been raised through the Foundation’s efforts, supporting 75 Ottawa area charities.

Who is eligible for a tax receipt?

Online donations of $20 or more will be issued a receipt by e-mail automatically. Lesser amounts will be issued a receipt upon request.

How can I see how my team is doing in the standings?

Click here to see where your team is ranked in the standings. The deadline for donations is 7 pm on Thursday, February 9. The race is on to see which teams make it to the ODBF Shiver ‘N Giver Fundraising Races!

What is the Ottawa Dragon Boat Foundation?

In 1998, a charitable component was added to the Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival, raising funds for local charities on an annual basis. Next, the Ottawa Dragon Boat Foundation was established in 2003 to help focus and grow the level of community support.

Are there any prizes for top fundraisers?

The top seven fundraising teams in each division (mixed and women) will compete in the ODBF Shiver ’N Giver Fundraising Races. Teams get a chance to hit the ice before anyone else AND raise money for charities!

Will the funds I raise for the ice event count towards my team’s total for the Pledge Challenge for the Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival in June?

Yes, the amount your team raises for the ice event will count towards your team’s total fundraising effort and be combined with what you raise for the June event as well. A great way to start your fundraising campaign early!

What is their mission?

The mission of the Ottawa Dragon Boat Foundation is to help build, strengthen and enhance community life in Ottawa by raising, managing and distributing funds to charitable organizations.

Can I pledge myself?

Of course! It’s always a great idea to make a pledge to yourself to show your potential donors that you are dedicated to your fundraising efforts.

How do I get started?

Login to your Race Roster profile in the registration system to set-up your personal donation page and send your fundraising link with your family and friends. You can also direct potential donors to our Foundation website (odbf.ca) where they can donate directly to you and your team.

All COVID-19 protocols are subject to change based on local public health and government guidelines.