Byline: Ambrosia Brody
NEWPORT BEACH — Boaters will rock ‘n’ roll their way through the holiday season while decorating their vessels for the 105th annual Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade and Ring of Lights. This year’s theme is “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” the Commodores Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce announced May 30.
Judy Candelaria and Michelle Stranak have been named the winners of a contest to come up with the theme. Both residents submitted the same theme, the chamber announced.
Both contestants will enjoy a VIP evening for two aboard the parade’s official Santa Boat during the 2013 parade. “Our Parade and Ring of Lights participants are some of the most creative people around, and go all out on their decorations,” said Jeff Parker, vice president and director of Operations and Communications for the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce. “The harbor will be rockin’ to this year’s theme.”
Candelaria, who has lived in Newport Beach for 22 years, said she chose the theme after recalling the song and activities that reminded her of Christmas. She said her winning choice “just made sense,” and it would be something everyone could relate to and recognize, according to a statement issued by the chamber.
For Stranak, the idea for the winning entry came after she heard the original song on the radio. She decided to enter the idea after mulling over a few others.
The theme was selected after the Commodores Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce put out a call for ideas earlier this month. The winning theme was selected by the Parade Committee from more than 160 submissions.
Each year, residents and visitors head to Newport Harbor to watch elaborately decorated sailboats, powerboats, kayaks, motoryachts and canoes cruise the 14.7-mile parade route through the bay. Boat owners are guided in their decorating schemes by the parade’s theme, which was “Surf, Sand and Santa” in 2012. Past themes have ranged from patriotic, such as “Celebrating America with Lights” in 2002; to playful, such as “Feelin’ Christmas-Sea in Newport Beach” in 2012. The only guidance parade organizers offer is that each theme must be concise — and one that parade and Ring of Lights entrants will be able to decorate around.
The Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade will be held Wednesday, Dec. 18 through Sunday, Dec. 22. The parade will start off Bay Island at 6:30 each evening and finish at the same location at approximately 9 p.m.
For more information, visit christmasboatparade.com.