Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade to Light Up Intracoastal Waterway

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The twinkling tradition attracts South Florida boating enthusiasts who have bought deep-water-dock homes through Waterfront Properties and Club Communities.

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One of the communities with best view of the southern half of the parade is Juno Isles in Juno Beach.

Northern Palm Beach County will sail into the spirit of the holidays when the 18th-annual Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade gets underway Dec. 1.

Organized, produced and sponsored by the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County, the Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade will travel from the North Palm Beach Country Club northward to Jupiter, led by a festive, fireworks-shooting escort boat.

Each of the 50-plus vessels participating in the Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade will feature lights, music, costumed crew members and other Florida-style holiday surprises. The event attracts tens of thousands of excited spectators who view the floating processional from parks, golf courses and bridges. Owners of Prosperity Harbor homes can watch the parade up-close from their back yards.

The Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade, for the 13th year, will serve as a fundraiser and toy drive for the Toys for Tots Foundation, a program of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. Last year, more than 18,000 unwrapped toys were collected for needy boys and girls in Palm Beach County who otherwise would go without this Christmas. Dozens of drop-off points have been stationed throughout the county during the past month, and toys can be donated, dockside, along the parade route during the two-hour extravaganza. Here’s how it works:

A flotilla of collection boats, called the “toy fleet,” will skirt the parade route and make on-the-spot pickups. As soon as a donor sees one of the boats, each of which will bear a flashing amber beacon, he or she should wave a flashlight, and a uniformed marine on the vessel will accept the toy.

From start to finish, the parade will sail under five bridges, all of which will be open between 45 minutes and one hour for safety reasons. Motorists have been informed about the bridge openings in the two weeks leading up to the event.

The bridges include the Parker Bridge in North Palm Beach and the PGA Bridge in Palm Beach Gardens on the first half of the route. Boats will then cruise past several Intracoastal Waterway homes for sale along a long, narrow stretch that will offer optimum viewing for the public. One of the communities with best view of the southern half of the parade is Juno Isles in Juno Beach.

The next bridge is at Donald Ross Road. Then, the parade approaches Admiral’s Cove in Jupiter before it gets to second-to-last bridge at Indiantown Road.

Sometime between 8:15 and 8:30 p.m., the final bridge, Jupiter Federal, will open, and the parade will terminate near the Jupiter Lighthouse.

In Jupiter, the town will throw a Holiday Boat Parade Celebration at the Riverwalk, which will run from 5 to 9:30 p.m. and will feature food vendors, holiday entertainment and family festivities. Santa Claus will visit the Holiday Boat Parade Celebration between 6 and 8 p.m., and the Jupiter Dance Academy will perform between 7 and 7:45 p.m.

Waterfront Properties and Club Communities is a proud supporter of the Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade, the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County’s premier event and its annual gift to the community. For information, call 561-863-0012.

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Rob Thomson
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