Christmas Flotilla suspended; Hometown Holidays continue

Published 12:34 am Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Powerless docks leave organizers with few options

Santa Claus will be a part of the Hometown Holidays set for Dec. 3 in downtown Washington, but he won’t ride on a decorated yacht along the Washington waterfront that night as part of the Christmas Flotilla.

That’s because the electrical service at the city-owned docks is a victim of Hurricane Irene. Because of the lack of power at those docks, the Christmas Flotilla is suspended this year, according to the Washington Harbor District Alliance and Pamlico Sail and Power Squadron. The two organizations join forces to organize and present the Christmas Flotilla.

“We met and discussed the options, but felt that due to concerns over the safety of the volunteers (who put on this event) and the boaters (who participate with their vessels), it would be best to suspend the annual parade of lights,” said Beth Byrd, alliance director, in an email. “There was some physical damage done to the docks, especially the dingy dock, which PTRF uses to launch their fantastic kayak presentations. There are also ongoing plans to improve the electrical stanchions, thus the delay in restoring power to the docks.”

Don’t despair children, Santa will be around plenty during Hometown Holidays. He will be an integral part of the Christmas parade organized by the Washington Kiwanis. The Christmas parade is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.

The parade was moved to 11 a.m. to help keep people in Washington so they will shop with city merchants, said Bobby Roberson, one of the Kiwanis members who organize the parade.

Roberson said anyone seeking an application to participate in the parade should visit the Washington Kiwanis’ website at later this week.