Image Courtsey of the Marine Industries Association: Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade
The holidays are a time for festive celebrations and joyful moments with friends and family, but more importantly the holidays are a time for giving. Every year events in our community bring everyone together to donate and help those in time of need.
This year and for the past 23 years, the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County (MIAPBC) hosts its annual Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade. Where residents and neighbors decorate their boats with holiday lights, decorations, holiday music, and of course some holiday cheer.
The parade will be led by fireworks as the boats cruise along the intracoastal waterways from North Palm Beach to the Jupiter Lighthouse on Saturday, December 2nd. The parade is expected to start in North Palm Beach Marina at 6 pm and will end in the Jupiter Inlet at 8 pm, rain or shine.
Along the parade route, there is plenty of public parks to see the show: North Palm Beach County Club, Bert Winters Park, Juno Park, Sawfish Bay Park, The Riverwalk, Inlet Village, and Harbourside Place just to name a few.
Fun family activities are held at Harbourside Place and the Riverwalk both located in Jupiter just as the parade passes by to head to the Jupiter Inlet.
Since 1999, the MIAPBC has joined together with the U.S. Marines Reserve Toys for Tots organization collecting thousands of new, unwrapped toys for local children in need. Last year, 10,000 toys were donated to spread the gift of the holidays to children and families in our area. This year, MIAPBC also joined together with Little Smiles, a charity that helps kids be kids during difficult times.
For those watching the parade and would like to donate, volunteers and uninformed Marines will travel along the parade route making stops along the way to pick up toys. You can stop the boat by waving a flash light whenever you see a Toys for Tots sign or a flashing amber beacon.
In addition, there is also several drop off locations throughout the area for you to drop off and donate as well, including Harbourside Place and the Jupiter Lighthouse.
This year long time Grand Marshals Mo and Sally from KOOL 105.5 and Honorary Grand Marshal Sal “The Voice” Valentinetti will be joining the parade on the Loggerhead Marina Grand Marshal boat to kick off the parade and the holiday season.
All residents are invited to enter their boats into the parade free of charge, and it’s not too late to enter your vessel. Residents may enter their vessel in the parade up until Wednesday, November 29th. The boats entered in the parade will be automatically entered to win up to $10,000 dollars in prizes and cash. Judges will choose the top three boats in one of the three categories: lights, enthusiasm, and overall effect, with a grand price of $500 dollars for the “best overall boat”. The boats are separated for judging based on the boats length in size.
During the parade, bridges crossing the intracoastal will be opened for periods of 45 minutes or longer to allow the boat parade to pass through continuously. Each bridge is estimated to open at different times to allow for traffic to continue. So, it’s best to get to your viewing spot early to avoid missing out on the much-anticipated parade.
For more information and drop off locations, visit www.palmbeachboatparade.com.