The Eastport Yacht Club Lights Parade, one of Annapolis’s signature events for more than 30 years, is back again this holiday season! This year’s generous sponsor is Long and Foster Real Estate, Eastport Office.
The parade bursts upon the Annapolis waterfront with up to 40 boats of all shapes and sizes, power and sail, brightly decorated with thousands of lights and crewed by jolly revelers. This festive maritime event is great fun for the entire family. Skippers participate for the fun of it, and circle the waterfront in two fleets: one circling in front of Eastport, the City Dock and the Naval Academy seawall, the other circling the length of Spa Creek, inside the bridge.
This year, the Lights Parade will be held on Saturday, December 14, between the hours of 6:00 and 8:00 PM. The event will occur rain or shine, with only high winds forcing a cancellation.
Lights Parade participants can compete for prizes and recognition either individually, or as a representative of their club. The parade is an excellent opportunity to show off a boat or to showcase a club. There will once again be a “People’s Choice Award” selected on the Lights Parade Facebook. Anyone may enter and Eastport Yacht Club provides safety briefings as well as a decorating seminar.
More than 50 volunteers work all year long to produce this event, a gift to the city of Annapolis from the Eastport Yacht Club. Twenty to thirty thousand people line the waterfront each year to watch this glittering holiday parade. In 2016, Annapolis and the EYC Lights Parade received national attention! CBS TV highlighted past segments of the parade during the “CBS This Morning” Saturday show. Additionally, The EYC Lights Parade has been nominated for the past three years to compete in a USA Today poll of “10 Best Holiday Parades”. In 2016 the parade placed Number ONE !
People can take home memories of the Lights Parade by purchasing posters, and other commemorative items. These will be available through the Eastport Yacht Club, and several downtown locations.
Skippers may register their boats until December 10 for this joyful holiday event. Entry forms are available online at www.eastportyc.org/lights-parade. This site provides information about the Lights Parade including parade maps, parking information, and viewing sites.
And for skippers looking to decorate, K & B True Value Hardware Store, on Forest Drive, is offering 10% off all lights parade decorating costs for 2019 parade entrants!