News & Events

On Saturday, July 31st, members of the Kootenay Robusters Dragon Boat Team gathered at the site of their future home to accept a $10,000 cheque from Elyza Jantzen on behalf of the Heritage Credit Union (Community Investment Grant).  The team received $5,000 from the Castlegar Branch and $5,000 from the Greenwood Branch. (Donna Durban of the Greenwood Branch was unable to attend).

Over the past four years the Robusters have been working to secure a home base where a boat shed could be constructed to store their boats and equipment.  For twenty years, the team has relied on Christina Lake residents to host paddlers, equipment and boats for practices that take place three times a week.  Now, thanks to the the cooperation of the Regional District, BC Parks, the Ministry of Transport and immediate neighbours at Christina Lake, plans are proceeding. 

The boat shed will be located on an unused road allowance at the end of Lavalley Road, next to the Christina Lake Provincial Park. The project will be undertaken in two phases with site preparation and foundations completed this fall and the structure built in the spring of 2022.  


From Martial Arts to Dragon Boats

posted Feb 2, 2021, 8:18 AM by Robusters Website



The Kootenay Robusters Dragon Boat Team (still going strong despite Covid 19) received a boost from Ignite Martial Arts recently.  Chad Bullock, who owns Ignite studios in Castlegar and Trail, has always been a supporter of Breast Cancer Awareness month in October.  Usually he donates the funds raised directly to the Breast Cancer Foundation but this year decided to keep the money local by providing it to the Robusters.  Formed originally to support the mental, physical and emotional well being of breast cancer survivors, one of the team’s goals has always been to raise awareness of breast cancer and the ways to prevent it. The Robusters appreciate the support and encouragement of all those who donate to the team and buy our calendars and raffle tickets. We are currently fundraising to build a boat shed to give our dragon boat a home.


Anu Dhillon, Lorraine Bell-Lebedoff and Denise Maier accept a donation of funds raised during Breast Cancer Awareness month from Chad Bullock, owner of Castlegar and Trail Ignite Martial Arts studios.

Robuster Raffle for 2020

posted Feb 2, 2021, 8:14 AM by Robusters Website


The Kootenay Robusters Dragon Boat Team recently drew three winning tickets for their annual raffle.  Winner of the decor tray donated by Home Goods was Sasha Podovinikoff of Castlegar.  Mary Hatlevik won the Robuster lottery ticket wreath and fellow Rosslander Jan Micklethwaite was the lucky winner of a lovely quilt created by Rae Salkeld.  The Robusters would like to thank all those who supported the team by purchasing raffle tickets and calendars.  We are hoping to make our new boathouse a reality this season.

Survey for People Who Have Had Breast Cancer

posted Oct 25, 2020, 12:48 PM by Robusters Website

Hello! My name is Jennifer Edgecombe. I am a graduate student at the University of British Columbia. I am conducting a study to explore the experience of managing breast cancer therapy side effects for individuals living in Interior British Columbia (BC). The Principal Investigator and Faculty Advisor of the study is Leslie Duran, Director of Rehabilitation Sciences Online Program.

Eligible participants:

Between 18 – 65 years of age

Living in Interior BC

Diagnosed with breast cancer in the past 6 months to 5 years

Able to read and understand English

Have a willingness to share your experience in a survey

If the above describes you, please consider taking part in my study. You will complete a 15-minute survey and the results will be used to write a report that may be read by healthcare providers and management within Interior Health and the BC Cancer Agency. 

Here is the link to the survey 

https://ubc.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_eUOLuN25LQnKETP

Questions? Please contact Jen Edgecombe at 250.318.1907 or jennifer.edgecombe@alumni.ubc.ca 

Please consider sharing this post. Please be aware that if you “like”, “comment” or “share” this post, you will be publicly identified with this study. 

Robuster Calendar for 2021

posted Oct 19, 2020, 2:09 PM by Robusters Website

The new Robuster Calendar is now available for the same low price of $10.00 at all the usual outlets in our home towns of Christina Lake, Grand Forks, Rossland, Trail and Castlegar.  We greatly appreciate the support of those who purchase a calendar and the help of  local merchants who sell our calendars and collect the money. 
Our local photographers have outdone themselves with lovely pictures of the area in all seasons. 
This year's goal is to earn enough money to make a start on building the dragon boat a new den at the south end of Christina Lake in 2021.
Call any Robuster on our contacts list from this site for help locating calendars in your area.  

Donation to KBRH Oncology

posted Aug 8, 2020, 12:39 PM by Robusters Website


The Kootenay Robusters frequently support the oncology departments of area hospitals by donating money from their annual calendar sales.

Pat Bruce and Bernice Barrass recently met with Lisa Pasin to make this year's donation, while safely distancing and modeling good mask wearing behavior. 

While the paddling season has been cancelled due to health and safety concerns, The Robusters would like to remind all supporters that our annual calendar will still be coming out in a few weeks.  

Covid 19 Can't Stop the Robusters

posted Aug 6, 2020, 1:05 PM by Robusters Website

The Kootenay Robusters Dragon Boat Team has had to park their dragon boat for this season, because of the need for physical distancing. However, team members are still committed to supporting each other to maintain good physical, mental and emotional health.  The Robusters are working out at home to maintain good muscle tone and individual kayaks have provided a way to get out on the water and keep up paddling skills while still having fun together. The Robusters would like to remind the community that their annual calendar will be available shortly and is essential to funding the paddling program, so that they can come back strong for their twentieth season in 2021.  

Christina Lake Cleanup 2020

posted May 31, 2020, 8:24 AM by Robusters Website



The Kootenay Robusters are used to packing 22 energetic women into a 40 foot boat.  However, with the current physical distancing restrictions, they moved further apart and got to work on Saturday, May 30 to help with the Christina Lake Cleanup.The team spread out, much more than two meters apart, on both sides of the highway and frontage roads. They also braved clouds of mosquitoes to clean trails in the Nature Park.  At one point the Robusters came together briefly for this photo with all the participants.  We were in the process of consolidating our bags of garbage for pickup later and then spread out again to maintain the appropriate social distance.
Paddlers came from Christina Lake, Rossland and Castlegar to help out with this project. The Robusters are hoping to resume training on the lake in the near future and encourage women in the area to give dragon boating a try.

A Home for the Dragon

posted May 7, 2020, 3:43 PM by Robusters Website

The Kootenay Robusters have started a fundraising effort to build a new boathouse on a piece of land we are in the process of acquiring.  Because of the Covid 19 challenges this year, we expect that construction will have to be delayed until next season, which will, fittingly, be our 20th anniversary.
Past and present members have been contacted with a request to consider making a one time donation to the building fund.  We would like to recognize those who have already sent in cheques  (totaling over a thousand dollars).  Thank you for your generosity.
Bernice & Lorne Barrass    
Kathleen Ross
Jean Lee
Robert & Colleen McQueen
Sally Chilcott
Otter Louis
James & Anna Ferraro

Robusters Enjoy Emmy Celebration

posted Oct 28, 2019, 7:11 PM by Robusters Website

Teammates of Cindy Alblas joined her at the Christina Lake Visitors Centre to celebrate her success at the recent Emmy ceremonies where she had been invited to create an item to honor recipients of the awards.  We enjoyed a slide show of the event and also the many tasty treats that Cindy provided to thank her many fans who had turned out to support her during the construction of the objets d'art that she created for the event. Now on to the Oscars!




Fundraising Focus for 2020

posted Oct 12, 2019, 7:41 PM by Robusters Website


The Kootenay Robusters Dragon Boat Team has a special focus for their fundraising this year.  We have leased a small piece of property at the south end of Christina Lake and have big plans for it.

After 20 years of parking our dragon boat, OC6 and safety boat at locations supplied by supportive community members, the team hopes to have a boathouse in place by the end of next season.

To make this happen, we are working on securing grants, contacting past and present members for donations and selling the ever popular Robuster calendars in locations throughout our communities.

As well, we have a raffle underway for a lovely quilt, donated by one of our paddlers, Rae Salkeld, as well as a gift basket and scratch and sniff wreath.

Look for our calendars and buy a couple to support your local dragon boat team as they raise awareness of breast cancer and help local women build strength, fitness and mental health.  

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