Dec. 10, 2005 — The Christmas Boat Parade has become a high point of the holiday season on St. Croix. Even though there were only eight boats in last year's parade, they were gaily decorated and the crowd on the dock kept letting out sighs of awe and breaking into bursts of appreciative clapping.
This year's parade is Dec. 17 and, according to organizer Linda Oliver, promises to be the biggest one yet, with over 30 boats — sail and power — winding their way through Christiansted harbor, all lighted up to celebrate the holiday season.
The parade will start at 6:15 (or just after dark), but everyone is invited to come earlier as many more activities are scheduled than last year. The parade is expected to last until 9 p.m.
The Gentlemen of Jones will again be singing Christmas carols. New will be the Mocko Jumbies working their way through the crowds on the boardwalk, and the strains of the Steel Pan Band from Ricardo Richards school sound out across the water.
A special added attraction is a laser light display from one of the vessels moored in the harbor.
Also new is that Santa will be floating along the front of the boardwalk in his dinghy, distributing candy to the children.
The parade will be broadcast with Roger W. Morgan on FM 93.5 Paradise Radio.
Oliver said the parade event this year seemed to really catch boat owners interest and they are making a lot of things happen. She also said members of the business community have been very supportive.
Businesses downtown will stay open during the event. Oliver said this would offer residents a chance to do some last minute Christmas shopping.
Proceeds from the parade and its sponsors will be sent to the "Toys for Tots" through the St. Croix Foundation.
Sponsors include Hovensa, Turner St. Croix, Triangle Maintenance, Pinnacle, Reliable Rentals, Olympic Car Rentals, Cruzan Rum, The Golden Hook, St. Croix Marine, SCUBA, Golden Rock Pharmacy and Gallows Bay Hardware.
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