• By Micah Dorfner

Mayo Clinic Health System Launches Dragon Boat Festivals in La Crosse and Eau Claire

July 15, 2015

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Mighty dragons are taking to the water in western Wisconsin this summer. Mayo Clinic Health System is hosting two Dragon Boat Festivals, in La Crosse and Eau Claire, to raise awareness and funds for health issues: breast cancer survivorship, and hospice and bereavement services. As a symbol of the teamwork that supports patients and families, teams of 20 paddlers, a drummer and a steersperson guide the colorful dragon boats. Music and spectator viewing of the races is free. Food and other items will be available for purchase. More than 100 volunteers will support each event.Dragon boat 5

Big Blue Dragon Boat Festival

La Crosse, June 17–18, Copeland Park

  • Friday
    6:00 p.m. opening ceremonies
    6:30 p.m. exhibition races, kid activities
    9:45 p.m. fireworks
  • Saturday
    8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. races
    1:00 p.m. survivor ceremony
    4:00 p.m. awards

More than 50 teams are participating in the third annual Big Blue Dragon Boat Festival in La Crosse. The event supports free mammograms for women in financial need, as well as comprehensive care and support for patients diagnosed with breast cancer at Mayo Clinic Health System Franciscan Healthcare in southwest Wisconsin.
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Half Moon Dragon Boat Festival

  Eau Claire, Aug. 8, Half Moon Beach   Saturday
   10:00 a.m. qualifying races
   12:15 p.m. opening ceremony, parade
   12:45 p.m. semifinal races
     3:00 p.m. remembrance ceremony
     5:30 p.m. awards

More than 30 teams are participating in the inaugural Half Moon Dragon Boat Festival in Eau Claire. The event will raise awareness of hospice care for people in the final stages of life. Funds raised will support bereavement services for families and the community following the loss of a loved one.

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Mayo Clinic Health System consists of clinics, hospitals and other health care facilities that serve the health care needs of people in 60 communities in Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The community-based providers, paired with the resources and expertise of Mayo Clinic, enable patients in the region to receive the highest-quality health care close to home.

The La Crosse based Franciscan Healthcare is a joint collaboration between Mayo Clinic Health System and co-sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration (FSPA).  The relationship first formed in 1995 when Franciscan Skemp Healthcare became part of the Mayo Clinic and Mayo Health System.  The FSPA built St. Francis Hospital in La Crosse back in 1883.  Skemp Clinic was later founded in 1923 by Dr. Archibald Skemp.   

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