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Where to find holiday boat parades in the Tampa Bay area

Holiday boat parades start Dec. 1 in the Tampa Bay area.
 
People line the Riverwalk to watch hundreds of illuminated boats make their way down the Hillsborough River last year. Here's a list of this year's holiday boat parades in the Tampa Bay area.
People line the Riverwalk to watch hundreds of illuminated boats make their way down the Hillsborough River last year. Here's a list of this year's holiday boat parades in the Tampa Bay area. [ LUIS SANTANA | Times ]
Published Nov. 24, 2023|Updated Dec. 14, 2023

‘Tis the season for illuminated holiday boat parades. Here’s a list of 13 Tampa Bay area parades, some of which get underway Dec. 1.

City of St. Pete Beach Holiday Boat Parade and Tree Lighting: The parade starts at the Blind Pass Bridge and travels south to the Pinellas Bayway Bridge. Meet Santa and listen to music at the parade viewing party and tree lighting ceremony. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 1. Horan Park, 7701 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Pete Beach. 727-363-9232.

Tarpon Springs Illuminated Boat Parade: The 34th annual parade proceeds down the Anclote River and into the bayous. The best viewing is from Whitcomb Bayou, Craig Park and Spring Bayou. Free. 8 p.m. Dec. 1. Craig Park, 100 Beekman Way, Tarpon Springs. 727-942-5628.

Alafia Lighted Boat Parade: Join Santa for the 39th annual lighted boat parade with crafts for kids and a chili cookoff. Free, $25 boat entry. 5-7 p.m. Dec. 2. Riverview Civic Center, 11020 Park Drive, Riverview.

Holiday Boat Parade & Tree Lighting: Dunedin kicks off the holiday season with a parade of decorated and illuminated boats launching from Loggerhead Marker 1 Marina and moving along the Intracoastal toward Dunedin Marina, where Santa will greet children of all ages. Enjoy holiday music, food by Olde Bay Café, s’mores and the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree. Free. 6-9 p.m. Dec. 2. Dunedin Marina, 51 Main St. 727-738-2920.

More than a dozen holiday boat parades are on tap this year.
More than a dozen holiday boat parades are on tap this year. [ LUIS SANTANA | Times ]

South Pasadena Lighted Boat Parade: The parade kicks off at 6:30 p.m. on the northeast side of Pasadena Isle, just outside MarineMax St. Petersburg, then follows the coastline of South Pasadena, going under the Corey Causeway Bridge, then through the inlets near Harbourside Condominiums and Bay Island Condominiums, ending behind Causeway Village and The Fountains. There’s a viewing party at Barbara Gilberg Habitat, 1600 Pasadena Ave. S., St. Petersburg. Free. 6:30 p.m. Dec. 8. MarineMax, 6810 Gulfport Blvd. S., St. Petersburg. 727-343-6520.

Boca Ciega Yacht Club Lighted Boat Parade: The 38th annual parade starts at Osgood Point. The parade continues to the Municipal Marina, Gulfport’s Williams Pier, Casino and beach before moving on to Town Shores, Kipp’s Colony, Skimmer’s Point and other communities. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 9. Clam Bayou Nature Park, 29th Avenue S. and Miriam Street S., Gulfport. 727-321-7295.

Clearwater Holiday Lighted Boat Parade: The 49th annual parade features both individual and commercial entries of all types and sizes decked out in holiday decor. Fox 13′s Laura Moody serves as grand marshal. Beginning in Mandalay Channel at 6 p.m., boats travel along the inlets of Island Estates before going under the Memorial Causeway Bridge and finishing at the Clearwater Yacht Club, 830 Bayway Blvd. The parade is expected to pass Coachman Park around 8:30 p.m. Free. 6-8:30 p.m. Dec. 9. Clearwater Yacht Club, 830 S Bayway Blvd. 727-447-6000.

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Apollo Beach Lighted Boat Parade: Boat owners show their colors in the annual parade held in the south basin of Apollo Beach. Free. 6-9 p.m. Dec. 9. Tampa Sailing Squadron, 1250 Apollo Beach Blvd., Apollo Beach. 813-645-8377.

Lit for the holidays, boats cruise on Boca Ciega Bay during the annual St. Pete Beach Holiday Boat Parade.
Lit for the holidays, boats cruise on Boca Ciega Bay during the annual St. Pete Beach Holiday Boat Parade. [ Times (2015) ]

Downtown St. Pete Christmas Lighted Boat Parade:The holiday boat parade has returned to downtown area waters. Good viewing is available along the St. Pete Pier and downtown area seawalls. Free. 6:15 p.m. Dec. 9. St. Petersburg Municipal Marina, 500 First Ave. SE.

Festival of Lights Boat Parade: Madeira Beach’s 57th annual lighted boat parade begins at American Legion Post 273, travels all the finger canals through the city and ends at John’s Pass. Free. 6:30-9:45 p.m. Dec. 9. American Legion Post 273, 600 American Legion Drive, Madeira Beach. 727-398-5680.

Redington Beach and Indian Shores Lighted Boat Parade: The parade kicks off at the Tom Stuart Causeway and travels waterways on its way to Caddy’s Pub restaurant in Indian Shores for an awards ceremony. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 10. Caddy’s Pub, 20025 Gulf Blvd., Indian Shores. 727-595-3172.

Treasure Island Holiday Boat Parade: The parade begins just south of the Treasure Island Causeway. The route travels south of Paradise Island, back through the Treasure Island Causeway Bridge at 7 p.m. and around the Isles of Palms and Capri, and finishes at John’s Pass at about 8:15 p.m. There are viewing areas at Treasure Island Golf and Tennis Club, along the Treasure Island Causeway Bridge and at John’s Pass. Free. 6 p.m. Dec. 22. Near 10771 Gulf Blvd., Treasure Island.

Tampa Riverwalk Lighted Boat Parade: The parade begins at the southern tip of Davis Islands and travels through the Tampa Convention Center basin and up to the Heights District, where the boats will turn around and head to Sparkman Wharf, where judging will occur and the parade will end. There is public viewing at Armature Works, Channel Drive, Curtis Hixon, Davis Islands, Harbour Island, Sparkman Wharf and Water Works Park. Free. 6:15 p.m. Dec. 23. Tampa Convention Center, 333 S. Franklin St. 813-274-8511.