The 23rd Annual Marco Island Street Parade rolled down San Marco Road at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. Several hundred spectators lined up their chairs from Balfour to Barfield several hours before the “step-off” to stake out prime seating for viewing the 90 minute event.
Local school bands, organizations, clubs and businesses marched along the route. Some were on ornately decorated floats and motorcycles, while others danced, sang or performed music as they made their way to the judge’s stand.
The weather was a bit cool, in the 50s, as was seen by those wearing hats, gloves and blankets as they enjoyed the many floats and musical performers. One family had a fire pit aflame in their driveway to keep warm.
Island friends and neighbors had tailgate parties and many showed their holiday spirit by wearing festive hats and clothing for the evening. Some of the viewers dressed their pets in holiday (Christmas) attire for the event, such as Richard, the French bulldog, wearing penguin antlers.
Many of the spectators were local residents who stated this was part of their annual holiday tradition and the perfect way to get into the spirit of the season.
Children reveled in the excitement as they gathered candy thrown from the parade participants and frolicked in the bubbles and man-made “snow” coming from the floats. From start to finish, the parade seemed to be a huge success, enjoyed by all!