NAPLES — It certainly wasn't a "Blue Christmas, but the Naples Bay Boat Parade got "All Shook Up" on Saturday night.
Several dozen boats lined with Christmas lights, dancing Santa Claus’s and Elvis impersonators gave a warm burst of holiday cheer to a hundred or so bundled onlookers huddled in the cool temperatures on Saturday evening for the 21st annual Marine Industries Christmas Boat Parade on Naples Bay.
The event, themed “Rock-N-Roll, Anything Goes” drew 27 sailboats, powerboats and commercial vessels from area residents and businesses and served as a fundraiser for the Ricky King Children’s Fund – an organization that provides financial assistance to needy families struggling to pay for quality healthcare for their children.
Last year, the event raised over $12,000 for the charity, according to Frank Perrucci, president of Marine Industries Association of Collier County.
Gigi Felicetta, of Naples and in her third year of attendance to the parade, admitted that Elvis stole the show. As to which particular Elvis she enjoyed the most – the rhinestone-studded dancing Elvis with his red dress wearing sidekick shaking her hips to “Hunk of Burning Love,” or the illuminated electric blue Elvis singing “Blue Christmas”, Felicetta said she was torn.
“It’s the spirit of the season,” Felicetta said after the parade had passed. “It’s the camaraderie of the boaters. I’m a softie for lights – any lights ... any kind ... anywhere.”
“Lady Serenity”, a 55-foot Hampton owned by Donn Schulte, took the title of “Overall Winner” for the evening.
And as the blue light lined Elvis faded into the calm bay waters while swaying to “Are You Lonesome Tonight”, the crowd breathed in the cool night air and sighed with the fulfillment of holiday spirit.
Other winners from the evening included:
Byron Keyser, Marie Vaughn, Rich Magliozzi, Ed Hogan of Yacht Concierge LLC, James Corts of Marine Max, George Adams of Lindburger’s Restaurant, Joe and Kelly Jagodzinski, Vaughn Peters and David Hirshberg.
- Check out this list of restaurants open on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day in Naples
- David Sedaris play "The Santaland Diaries" offers a stocking full of goodies in Fort Myers
- Looking for something to do? Search our list of Holiday events
- Submit your holiday events to our interactive calendar
- Going out this holiday season? Share your photos from all the events around town with us!
- Wish Lists: Local charities offer up their wish lists to the community
- Naples Bay Christmas Boat Parade
- Your Photos: Naples Bay Christmas Boat Parade
- 2010 Bonita Springs Holiday Boat Parade
- Isles of Capri Holiday Boat Parade 2010
- Marco Island's Joy of Giving 2010
- Marco Island Christmas Street Parade 2010
- Christmas Walk and Avenue of Lights on Fifth Avenue South
- Flesher Farm Christmas display 2010
- Third Street South Festival of Lights
- Your Photos: Third Street South Festival of Lights
- Bayfront Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony
- Two-story gingerbread house at The Ritz-Carlton