The Palm Coast Boat Parade celebrated its 40th anniversary on Dec. 9 with its largest-ever number of decorated vessels.
At a captain's meeting held earlier in the day on Dec. 9 for the registered boaters, Parade Chair Sarah Ulis said the parade was up to 108 registrants, making it the largest lighted holiday boat parade in Florida. In 2022, the holiday boat parade included 91 registered participants.
Between the registered boaters and the number of other Palm Coast residents who did not register but still decorated their own boats for the parade, there were at least 150 decorated vessels, Ulis wrote in an email to the Observer. She called the event a "sea of lights."
"The number of officially registered boats was met and even surpassed by other Palm Coast boaters who decorated their boats to the plimsoll line and on up into the sky," Ulis wrote.
For next year's parade, Ulis wrote, there will be official counters, and the parade will submit the numbers to Guinness World Records.
The parade, organized by the Palm Coast Yacht Club, ran from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and the city of Palm Coast livestreamed the parade on its YouTube channel. The parade was dedicated to Al Krier, a longtime community activist who died in December 2022.
For the first time, Flagler County provided free shuttle services to and from European Village, allowing people to park at the Community Center and Daytona State College Campus to go view the parade.
"Thanks to everyone for participating and making this such an amazing event for Palm Coast," Ulis wrote.