Carrabelle’s annual Holiday on the Harbor and Boat Parade of Lights was dazzling as usual.
The night was clear and warm as happy people mingled in the street to celebrate the holidays. This year, the city did not supply a free supper to celebrants but instead encouraged local merchants to stay open late and welcomed not-for-profits to sell snacks in support of a good cause.
Shops and the Carrabelle History Museum remained open along with local cafes. About 20 vendors sold raffle tickets and tasty treats, from popcorn to pumpkin rolls, to the several hundred people strolling the merry streets under dancing Christmas dolphins.
There was an open microphone in the riverside pavilion where local talent could make itself heard. Santa was on hand to hear the wishes of excited youngsters.
A dozen beautifully decorated boats arrayed in twinkling lights motored or paddled down the river before judges Mary Ann Shields, Diana Strickland, Jeff and Sid McOmie and Jack Fonner.
Winners were Pontoon Division (Capt. Clyde Clark); Kayak Division (Tom Herzog;); Commercial Division Over 24 feet (Capt. Chester Reese with Natural World Charters); Commercial Division Under 24 feet (Moorings Marina); Recreational Division Under 24 feet (1st-Capt. Charlie Painter, 2nd – Capt. Read Westcott); Recreational Division 24 to 30 feet (1st - Capt. Barney Crutchfield, 2nd – Capt. Scott and Jenny Holloway, and 3rd – Capt. Millard Collins); Recreational Division 30 to 40 Feet (Capt. Scott and Rachel Lawley); Recreational Division Over 40 Feet (Capt. David Bellamy); Best of Show (Capt. Barney Crutchfield).
The Marina Challenge was won by Moorings Marina. Every one of the participants was amazing and creative. Thanks to the boat owners who took the trouble to entertain their neighbors.
The evening ended with a breathtaking fireworks display.