|WAYV is excited to announce that The 5th Annual Gilda’s Club South Jersey Dragon Boat Festival is happening! This event will take place on Sunday, July 11th, 2021 at Lake Lenape in Mays Landing. A Dragon Boat consists of 20 paddlers plus a drummer to keep everyone paddling in time. Anyone can participate in the Dragon Boat races. There are various levels of teams; Clubs, Community, and Corporate. In addition to the boat races, the day at the lake will include: food trucks, a beer garden, corn hole, and various other vendors. A donation is suggested for spectators to attend the festival.
What’s the donation for? In 1994, physical therapist Dr. Susan Harris was diagnosed with breast cancer, which meant she was forbidden to exercise her upper body. There was a common belief that when diagnosed with breast cancer, upper body exercise would cause a condition called lymphedema, a swelling that’s relatively common in the arms of breast cancer survivors who have had lymph nodes removed. But Harris wasn’t ready to give up such a big portion of her life, so she decided to challenge the myth. She got together with her colleague Don Mckenzie, who is a sports medicine physician and an exercise physiologist. He too was skeptical of the idea that exercise in the upper body would cause lymphedema, so the two of them did some research.
Sure enough, there was no proof of exercise directly causing lymphedema in breast cancer patients. And to prove so, Harris and Mckenzie got a team of 24 breast cancer survivors together to compete in Dragon Boat races, where they would be paddling in canoes and exercising their upper body while they do so. After several races, none of the breast cancer survivors were diagnosed with lymphedema.
While Harris and Mckenzie were able to create some relief for those battling breast cancer, there is still a ton of research that needs to be done. All proceeds go directly to the free support programs at Gilda’s Club for men, women, teens, and children impacted by all forms of cancer, at any stage of their cancer journey.
All are welcome whether affected by the cause or not!
Please call Jessica at (609) 926-9266 or email Jessica@gildasclubsouthjersey.org for more information.
Gilda’s Club South Jersey’s mission is to ensure that all people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action, and sustained by community.