There is nothing better than a parade during the holiday season. Wait!...maybe there is. It’s a boat parade! Where else can you sit in your lawn chair by peaceful waters, kick off your flip flops, and view the magic that is light on water? Boat parades are a Space Coast tradition but not a tradition unique to our area. Indeed, there are 74 boat parades scheduled around Florida during December. Here are the closest ones, but don't let that discourage you from viewing one in another area. Coastlines and waterways are all different, and that makes each parade unique. For a complete listing of all parades, visit the Florida by Water web site. An invaluable resource!
Port Canaveral Christmas Boat Parade
Kick-off the holiday season by attending "A Creative Christmas" Boat Parade in Port Canaveral on Saturday, Dec. 7 starting at 5:30 p.m. Best viewing will be from any of the Port restaurants so plan to arrive early. Port businesses will be collecting canned and non-perishable goods to benefit the Central Brevard Sharing Center. So come join this family event and help those that are less fortunate in the community. For more information call Shawn at 321-403-5769 or visit www.visitportcanaveral.com.
Cocoa Beach Christmas Boat Parade
Cocoa Beach embraces the laid-back attitude often associated with popular tourist locations who simply do not worry about details too early. Fortunately, the show is worth the frustration. According to the Chamber of Commerce, the date for the Cocoa Beach Christmas boat parade is set for Saturday, December 14. The time has been set for 7:00 - 10:00 p.m. but location is forthcoming.
Satellite Beach Christmas Boat Parade
This parade is one of the most popular, and possibly because it is the biggest. In 2012 there were over 80 boats, down from 114 in 2011. It is a well-organized event which makes it popular with boat-owners and viewers. All boaters are invited to this unique Christmas celebration, boats large and small, sail or power, even rowed. There are no fees, no registrations, and no guidelines – however, there is Santa, all the lights any boat could display, Christmas music, sailing Christmas trees, and jolly boaters having a party. Just meet at the north end of the Grand Canal by 6:00 pm, and follow the Satellite Beach Police Boat and the Banana River Sail and Power Squadron vessel with Santa Claus.
The date is Saturday, December 21 and the fun begins at 6:00 p.m. The parade will start, rain or shine, at the north end of the Grand Canal and will go south, following the Satellite Marine Police Boat and the BRSPS Santa Claus Boat. The parade will circle clockwise around Lake Shepherd and then south as far as Mathers Bridge. Participants are welcome to take the entire route. All parade communications will be on VHS Channel 71.
Christmas, boats, lights, laughter and applause – how much better can it get? Lighten up!