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- Jupiter, Florida, United States
Light Up the Night
Every year, on the first Saturday of December, dozens of boat owners deck out their crafts with dazzling lights and festive decorations. Residents from all over the area come to line the waterways and catch a glimpse of the show.
Keith and Teresa “Mama T” Wrigley look forward to participating in this celebration all year long. The Wrigleys received second place in the below 25-foot category last year. Keith explains, “We do it for the fun of it. It’s something we enjoy and the best part is that it’s all local!”
The parade route runs from Blue Heron to the Jupiter Lighthouse. Judging takes place in Old Port Cove before the parade begins. The route takes the boats around two hours (6:00 PM – 8:00 PM) to complete from beginning to end.
The Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County puts on the event each year with help from a number of local sponsors and partnerships. In addition to a night of fun and festivities, there is a toy drive benefitting both Little Smiles and Toys For Tots during the parade. Collection takes place from the boat participants and the spectators along the intracoastal.
A Conversation with the Wrigleys
How long does it take to decorate your boat? “These days, it takes about three or four days because we have the supplies and system in place. The first year, it took about a month.”
What made you start entering the parade? “Keith has always loved decorating for Christmas. He always goes the whole nine yards,” says Teresa. “A few friends talked us into doing it. Since then, it has become a tradition that we enjoy spending with our girls!”
Where do you get ideas for decorations? “We like to represent the area along with celebrating the holiday season.”