First Annual Christmas Lighted Boat Parade held in San Pedro

The Island Newspaper, Ambergris Caye, Belize            Vol. 16, No. 48            December 7, 2006

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Ramon’s Village took home five trophies, including Most Artistic - the “Miss Made”, pictured.

Mayor’s Choice Trophy Winners: SEArious Adventures

SEAduced’s SEAduction Sailing won first place in the catamaran divison.

The Island Ferry Water Taxi’s vessel and a comical dancing Santa (Captain Sterling Vorus) took second place in the power boat category.



Ramon’s Santa waves to the onlookers from his gorgeously lit boat.

Marvin Vernon, creator of the trophies handed out, with Jan Brown, chairperson of the Lighted Boat Parade Committee.

Carvin’ Marvin (Marvin Vernon) created the exquisite trophies handed out to winners.

For the romantics, the nice (almost) full moon, came out in all it's glory to shine down on the first ever Christmas Lighted Boat Parade.


A gorgeous bright moon, twinkling stars and the soft swaying of palm trees on the beach have always been a call to romantics at heart. To have beautiful, colorful lights shining above the azure Caribbean waters proved to be an even greater appeal.

    This past Sunday, Ambergris Caye was seen in a whole new light, as residents enjoyed the beauty of the first Annual San Pedro Christmas Boat Parade. Boats ranging from speed boats to sailboats and catamarans sailed gracefully over the dark waters which reflected a kaleidoscope of dancing colors. The dazzling array of holiday lights, festive music and even fireworks filled the air proving to be a great show to people lined up on the beach, docks, hotels, and peeking through their windows at home.

    Whether large or small, long or short, boats entered into the first competition of its kind on the island providing a different and very entertaining sight for the many people that stood watching. Decorated with whimsical, comical, traditional or religious themes, one couldn’t help but admire the time and effort crew members put into their craft. The boats, all richly decorated with animated Christmas scenes were accompanied by music and costumed carolers. The Dancing Santa (Sterling Vorus from the Island Ferry) was a favorite among all, with his jolly cheer and lighted suit.

    The Christmas floats met up at the Patojo’s dock and made their way down the harbor to Perla Escondida, giving viewers an incredible sight of illuminating boats that glowed ever so brightly. Making the lights shine even more brightly was the fact that shortly prior to the start of the parade, a blackout was experienced in San Pedro, making the boats on the water the only lights on the island (among a few businesses that own generators).

    Sure enough the San Pedro Sun was invited to partake in the holiday festivities and boarded the “party boat” along with the rest of sponsors. On board the vessels were several enthusiastic crowds of festive goers, who, with much cheer and sparkle made for an even better time.

    During the parade, judges had the challenging task of choosing winners for the various categories but at the end of the night a decision was made. Once the parade came to an end, sponsors, crew and spectators joined the planning committee at Pier Lounge/Caliente beach where the winners were to be announced. Providing music for the awards ceremony were the dynamic duo of Wil and Dale who kept the cheery mood going. Soon enough, Chairperson of the planning committee Jan Brown took center stage. “I am pleased to see the turnout and great success that we have had this year. Many lighted boat parades start with less boats than what we had this year and through the years gain popularity and an even more number of boat participants. We already have people that want to sign up for next season. It is a great start to what I hope will be an annual San Pedro tradition.”

    Winners were presented gorgeous trophies created out of handcrafted Belizean woods made by none other than Marvin Vernon who for years has carved his niche in San Pedro. And now the winners: First place in the Power boat category (19’ – 25’) was “Bressa Sabrosa” sponsored by the Ambergris Jade Museum.

    The Island Ferry Water Taxi’s vessel and a comical dancing Santa took second place. In the 26’ to 34’ power category; first and second place prize went to “Miss Belize” and “Miss Made” both sponsored by Ramon’s Village Resort. The 35 foot and up category was won by the “Me too” vessel sponsored by Tackle Box Bar & Grill and Wet Willy’s. Second was “Amber Tiki” of Discovery Divers.

    In the Sail Boat or Catamaran category, first place went to “SEAduction Sailing” from SEAduced by Belize. SEArious Adventures took second prize with its “Escape” catamaran.

    Prizes were handed to the Most Artistic which went to “Miss Made” of Ramon’s Village. Best Religious vessel was won by “Miss Belize” of Ramon’s Village. Other fantastic prizes for “Best Overall” were given to “Miss Belize” of Ramon’s who received a trophy plus an Orange Gift Shop certificate of $100. Last but certainly not the least was the “Mayor’s Trophy” which was won by the crew of SEArious Adventures catamaran “Escape”. Their prizes included a trophy plus two gift certificates from Casa Picasso and Wings.

    Residents, visitors, organizers, spectators, children as well as adults all agreed that the parade was a splendid treat; one that they hope will be a continued delight, marking the beginning of the Christmas Season in San Pedro. And Jan Brown could not agree more. “People can definitely look forward to the second Annual San Pedro Christmas Boat Parade the first Sunday of December in 2007!” she exclaimed.

    This year’s Christmas Lighted Boat Parade proved magical for everyone as it illuminated the sky and sea. To the organizers and sponsors, a job well done. From the community of San Pedro, thanks for bringing Christmas merriment to our hearts.



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