Prize-winning Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade entries lit up the night with style and spirit
Story by Joe Piasecki
Photos by Mike Yokotake
Under the theme “Adventures on the Sea,” the 53rd annual Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade went off with style and spirit on Dec. 12.
Actress Florence Henderson, a Marina del Rey local, presided over the festivities as grand marshal.
The parade’s 55 official entries this year included boats as small as 22 feet and as large a Hornblower’s 113-foot “Entertainer” party cruiser. All sparkled with holiday cheer, but parade judges fêted several standouts for special award recognition.
BEST OVERALL: “Fiddler’s Green,” a 38-foot sailboat helmed for the Pacific Mariners Yacht Club by former PMYC Commodore Larry Koch, was “Hooked on Christmas.”
BEST POWERBOAT: Perry Karidis’ “Trinity,” a 41-footer, got the crowd into the swing of things with a “Rockin’ Christmas” interpretation of the parade’s theme.
BEST SAILBOAT: Peter Ellis and Colin Kastner, parade participants since 1991, turned the 34-foot “Ellis Island II” into an animated light display adventure story featuring a sea serpent, Santa in a submarine and a giant whale.
BEST ENTRY BY A YACHT CLUB: Craig Melone and Gisele O. represented the Marina Venice Yacht Club on the 37-foot “Let’s Go” with Frosty, the Grinch and Stuart the Minion along for the ride.
BEST ENTRY BY AN INDIVIDUAL: Toan Lam made the mast of the 28-foot sailboat “Katie Choo” into a giant glowing-green Christmas tree inhabited by windsock jellyfish and a crew in costume as undersea creatures.
BEST ENTRY BY AN ORGANIZATION: The Women’s Sailing Association of Santa Monica Bay exuded energy and enthusiasm from the deck of member George Maronich’s 42-foot sailboat “My Time 3.”
BEST SPIRIT: Bruce Taguchi’s 25-foot powerboat “Weekend Hooker” (the man likes to fish) stood out from the crowd with an array of bright blue LED lights that sparkled on the surface of water.
For pictures of all entries and complete awards listings, visit mdrboatparade.org.