Decked in exotic Tiki decor, the 45th Annual Boat Parade of Lights in Dana Point kicks off with a bang on Dec. 6. The harbor will present a huge tiki-themed celebration with activities, live entertainment, Santa visits and, of course, a dazzling parade of local boats lit up with holiday lights.
Dana Point Harbor Partners have extended the “Happy Harbor Days” magnificent light display until midnight on January 5. The illuminated harbor features intricate themed light creations including Candy Cane Lane, the “Merry Kiss Me” arch, and lighted trees. Dana Point Harbor Partners Joe Ueberroth, President of Bellwether Financial Group, and Bryon Ward, President of Burnham-Ward Properties, share why you can’t miss this year’s spectacular celebration.
What was the inspiration behind the “Tiki” theme this year?
Ueberroth: This year marks the first year that Dana Point Harbor Partners are hosting Dana Point Harbor’s annual Boat Parade and activities, so we wanted a theme that is fresh, fun, and festive. The theme, “Tiki Holiday” gives the boaters an opportunity to get creative with their decorations and accompanying music. Dana Point Harbor Partners will also provide an exciting line-up of tiki-themed entertainment including hula dancers, a VW photo booth bus, and face painters. Restaurant offerings with a tiki twist will also be enjoyed.
What elements will make this year’s boat parade event unique from past events?
Ueberroth: Dana Point Harbor Partners are expecting more boater participant entries than last year, creating a healthy rivalry among the boaters for the best display. We have also introduced exciting new award categories. A $1,000 donation will be awarded to the charity or youth sailing program of the yacht club with the most entries in the 45th Annual Boat Parade of Lights between Dana West Yacht Club and Dana Point Yacht Club. All award winners will receive cash prizes this year, with a total distribution of over $10,000 courtesy of Dana Point Harbor Partners.
How many spectators are you anticipating this year?
Ward: We are anticipating more than 15,000 spectators across the four days of the Boat Parade alone. Dana Point Harbor is one of the most festive places to be in Orange County throughout the holiday season. We expect thousands of more visitors to enjoy the light displays, restaurants, and shops every evening in the harbor until January 2. Viewing the incredible lights display is a must for Orange County families and their out of town guests.
For those who have never attended the Dana Point Harbor event, what would you tell them?
Ward: The Boat Parade of Lights is a holiday tradition in Dana Point and truly captures the SoCal holiday spirit. It’s the perfect time to gather your friends and family and enjoy boats decked out with twinkling lights and tiki-themed decor, whether viewing from the shore or onboard a vessel. For those unable to attend the Boat Parade of Lights, the vibrant light displays at the harbor such as the “Merry Kiss Me” arch, lighted trees, and much more will shine bright through January 2.
For more information visit DanaPointHarbor.com