An armada of boats will be taking over Tempe Town Lake this weekend. But have no fear; the Valley is not being invaded by crazy-looking pirates. The cheerfully hyper water paddlers are harmless participants in the seventh annual SRP Arizona Dragon Boat Festival, where aqua-minded athletes compete in the ancient Chinese sport. Teams of 16 people get in huge-ass boats, decorated with ferocious (well, theyre actually kinda cute) dragons, and use some serious upper body strength to power the water vehicles. The surrounding crowd can cheer them on and then enjoy the accompanying festival bursting with vendors, food, martial artists, dancers, and live music. Kids are welcome at this family-friendly event, which will also have a children's area.
Sat., March 27, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., March 28, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., 2010