Love the Bay’s tradition of lighted boat parades, but hate going out in the December cold to enjoy them? The folks in Havre de Grace, Md. wised up and put on their first-ever lighted boat parade in the summer—and it was a hit this past weekend during the Havre de Grace Waterfront Festival.
The boat parade on Friday night kicked off the the weekend-long festival sponsored by the city of Havre de Grace and the nonprofit Havre de Grace Alliance.
On a beautiful full moon evening, 25 decorated powerboats and sailboats, ranging from 15 to 64 feet, paraded one mile along the city shoreline from Lighted Green Channel Buoy “17” north to the Amtrak bridge. Click through the photos below to see the parade that started at dusk and finished in full darkness. Drone images by Spike Settles give the scale of the waterfront parade:
The Susquehanna Hose Company fire rescue boat led the parade with support from the Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Perry Point fire rescue boat and the Charlestown fire rescue boat.
Festival-goers watched from Concord Point Park as boats were judged in categories like Best Decorated Sailboat, Best Decorated Powerboat, Best Use of Lights, Most Original and Mayor’s Choice.
Lindsay Jones, an organizer with the Havre de Grace tourism office, says the community embraced the new tradition, which is now set to become an annual event. “The enthusiasm is amazing!” she tells Bay Bulletin.
And not a single participant had to bundle up in long underwear and parka to enjoy this lighted boat parade.
–Meg Walburn Viviano