Boat Parade of Lights wins USA Today readers’ choice award

Santa Claus was a special guest at the annual Alexandria Holiday Boat Parade of Lights on Dec. 2 (Photo Credit: Secor for Visit Alexandria)

By Alexa Epitropoulos | [email protected]

Less than a week after the latest iteration of the Alexandria Holiday Boat Parade of Lights, the annual event has won a USA Today readers’ choice award for best holiday parades.

The list ranked the long-running boat parade of lights number 8, sandwiched between the Christmas Ship Parade in Portland, Oregon and the Seminole Hard Rock Winterfest Boat Parade in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Mummers Parade in Philadelphia won the top spot. Two other local parades, the Eastport Yacht Club Lights Parade of Annapolis, Maryland and the Reston Holiday Parade of Reston, Virginia, also made the list.

In order to determine the readers’ choice awards, the public was asked to vote from a list of 20 ‘best holiday parade’ nominees, which were chosen by a panel of experts from USA Today,, as well as other media sources and outside contributors. 

The Holiday Boat Parade of Lights is presented by the city, Visit Alexandria, the Old Dominion Boat Club and the Potomac Riverboat Co. Visit Alexandria acted as the lead producer of the event this year. 

“We are thrilled to receive this honor,” Visit Alexandria CEO Patricia Washington said in a news release. “The Alexandria Holiday Boat Parade of Lights has been a beloved holiday tradition in Old Town Alexandria for 18 years and is a signature celebration for our historic waterfront.” 

View the winning boats of 2017 below.

Holiday Boat Parade of Lights 2017

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"State of Comfort" was named "Best of Alexandria Show" at the Dec. 2 event (Photo Credit: E. Michio for Visit Alexandria)