The Festival embraces the culture and traditions of dragon boat racing. The Sudbury Dragon Boat Festival is a registered non-profit and was created in the year 2000 by the founding partners, the Chinese Heritage Association of Northern Ontario (CHANO), and the Sudbury Canoe Club (SCC).

Paddlers are encouraged to raise pledge money as part of their participation and all funds raised by the paddlers support that year’s designated pledge beneficiary. The Sudbury Dragon Boat Festival sustains itself through team registrations vendor fees, and sponsorships.