KUCHING: The Sarawak Regatta-Kuching Waterfront Festival 2018 is scheduled to take place this year from Oct 26-Nov 4.
The annual event attracted some 10,000 visitors daily last year and this year, the Kuching Waterfront is expected to see big crowds at the Sarawak Regatta and the Sarawak International Dragon Boat Race which offer RM280,000 worth of prizes.
â€œRoads in the area will be closed during the opening and closing ceremonies. One road will be closed during the weekday to accommodate the stalls,â€� said Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah in a press conference here yesterday.
â€œApart from the boat races, the Sarawak Kitchen and Entrepreneurship as well as the Malaysia Handicraft Sales will also be held throughout the festival,â€� he said adding other events expected are cultural performances, karaoke, drumming contests, busker performances and performances from invited singers.
The Dragon Boat Race is the first to kick off on the first weekend, running from Oct 26-28 while the Sarawak Regatta starts on the second weekend from Nov 2-4.
Abdul Karim disclosed the Sarawak International Dragon Boat Race Eye-Dotting Ceremony will be on Oct 27 at 9am where Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg is expected to officiate.
â€œThe Dragon Boat Race will have five categories, namely the International Openâ€™s 20 crew, International Openâ€™s 12 crew, International Mixed 12 crew, International Ladies 12 crew, and International Master 12 crew.
Twelve countries will be participating in the race namely Brunei, China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Switzerland, Chinese Taipei (Taiwan), the Philippines, Singapore, Macao, Germany, Indonesia and Malaysia (with teams from Kuala Lumpur. Penang, Sabah and Sarawak).
â€œThis race will see a total of 29 teams taking part with over 900 people vying for a share of the RM45,500 in prizes,â€� he said.
Meanwhile, the Sarawak Regatta formalities will take place on Nov 3 at 9am with Abang Johari expected to officiate at the ceremony.
The highlight of the Sarawak Regatta is the River King Trophy (Piala Raja Sungai) scheduled for Nov 4 where Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud is expected to attend.
This year, there will be 14 categories of boat races involving 24 qualifying races and 12 finals. Sarawak Regatta is offering cash prizes of up to RM240,000 while the River King Trophy comes with a cash prize of RM10,000.
Entry forms will be available from Sept 18 onwards at Sarawak Rivers Board Office, 2nd Floor, Electra House here. Closing date for submission is Oct 12 at 12pm while briefing for team managers is scheduled for Oct 23 at 9am.
Assistant Minister of Youths and Sports Snowdan Lawan was present at the press conference.