Mailbag: Boat parade overcame the boycott

As you can imagine, this was a very interesting year for the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade: the slack economy, the uncertainty of home and parade entries and, of course, the organized boycott of the event.

As it turns out, we had one of the best Ring of Lights and boat parades ever. The constant nagging on the economic forecast and the disappointment by many of the boycott threats brought the community together bigger, better and stronger than ever.

We had hundreds of homes do elaborate and beautiful decorations around the bayfront, and we had almost 90 boats registered in the Christmas Boat Parade. The events drew very positive national and international media attention to our great town and brought more than 1 million visitors to our shores. The residuals of these accomplishments have a positive effect on our local economy and will be celebrated throughout the year.

The Commodores Club of the Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce, Visit Newport Beach, the incredible sponsors, along with the literally hundreds of volunteers, worked tirelessly to organize this wonderful event.

But with that said, without the boat owners and without the homeowners, there is no event. The amount of time and the amount of money that these folks devote to our community to bring us this spectacular annual tradition is truly overwhelming.

So on behalf of the Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade Committee, and from the more than 1 million people who enjoyed your generosity, thank you for all you do to make this a world-class event.

See you all next year

David Beek

Newport Beach

The writer was the chairman was of this year's Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade.


Thanks for the boycott

I'd just like to thank the Newport Beach dock owners who boycotted the boat parade this year. I was in that parade for 20 years. Placed second one year and third another. I drove from an unprotected fly bridge. It rained on us some years, and we froze other years. It never occurred to me the businesses were making money on me.

So what? I decorated my boat for the people on it and the thousands of kids that lined the shore and gazed with wonderment at the lights. I went to the parade Friday night. It was bad. I took a 7-year-old for his first time. He thought it was lame. No wonderment at all. So thanks again. Hope you made your point

John Waters

Costa Mesa

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