- Associated Press - Friday, December 2, 2016

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - The Mississippi Coast’s natural resources shine perhaps their brightest before Christmas as boat parades illuminate waterways, the night sky and even city streets.

Three parades are scheduled for Saturday in Biloxi, Long Beach and Moss Point. Christmas in the Bayou in Gulfport has announced its parade will be Dec. 10.

“It’s just a wonderment to watch all the boats,” said Melanie Clark of the Bayou Bernard Boat Club, sponsor of Christmas on the Bayou. “It’s so amazing to see all the ideas the boaters come up with.”

Of the four boat parades, only one is not on the water, but on city streets.

Moss Point’s boat parade caps of a day of activities. The boat parade is at the Riverfront Dockside. Start time is 6:15 p.m. and fireworks are at 7 p.m. There’s also a parade from Southgate Mall to the Riverfront at 3 p.m.; and a tree lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. at the Riverfront Welcome Center along with holiday music.

Sea Santa Sail-a-Bration in Long Beach has a boat parade that rolls at 5:30 p.m. followed by fireworks. But this parade isn’t on the water. Boaters trailer their boats in a parade from Jeff Davis Avenue to the Harper McCaughan Town Green, where other activities will begin at 4:30 p.m. There’re crafts and entertainment and the celebration ends with a visit from Santa.

The 31st annual Christmas on the Water Boat Parade in Biloxi starts at 6 p.m. Boats will sail across the Mississippi Sound starting just south of the Biloxi Lighthouse and ending at Point Cadet. The parade ends with fireworks. Best viewing areas are between the Biloxi Small Craft Harbor and Casino Row, and between the Biloxi Lighthouse and Beau Rivage Resort & Casino.


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