Port O’Connor Lighted Boat Parade By Joyce Jordan

Archived in the category: General Info
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 15 Dec 11 - 0 Comments

Best Commercial Boat

Doug and Mary Jo Walker’s shrimp boat, and the crew from Beacon 44 RV Park took the prize for “Best Commercial Boat” in the Parade.

Most Spirited

Will Ostrand, of Spring, TX, and his crew of the “Don’t Panic” (shown above and at right) won the “Most Spirited” award in the Port O’Connor Lighted Boat Parade.

The Port O’Connor Lighted Boat Parade, sponsored by the Port O’Connor Chamber of Commerce, was held on Saturday, December 3rd. It has been declared the biggest and best in Port O’Connor’s recent history. If you did not get to watch it, you missed a spectacular event!

Thank you to all who participated. It was a daunting task for the judges to decide on the winners as it seems there were so many deserving entries and not enough categories. The judges were torn, but finally decided on the following winners listed below. Included is a brief, but not necessarily complete description of each winning vessel for identification.

Category: Boat No., Name, Type, Description: Area/City:

Most Special # 19 U.S. Coast Guard – BM1 Terry J. Reed, Operations Petty Officer Port O’Connor
(Santa, Reindeer, Candy Canes, Music)

Best Overall # 30 Chad Trueheart Friendswood
(Christmas Tree and Fireworks)

Most Spirited
# 12 Will Ostrand Spring
(Dancers, Dancing Santa, Texas Flags, Music)

Most Unique # 01 Annette Hausman Freeport
(Mr. & Mrs. Claus, Elf, Dogs w/Lights)

Best Commercial # 28 Mary Jo Walker Port O’Connor
(Shrimp Boat with Pirate/Skull Crossbone, Outrigger Lights, Music)

Best Large Pleasure # 27 Frank Gerking Seadrift
(Houseboat with Snowman, Wreath, Christmas Tree)

Best Medium Pleasure # 24 Jason Fry Cypress
(Sleigh & Dolphins, Candy Canes)

Best Small Pleasure # 22 Chris Doolin Port O’Connor
(Stagecoach, Sailfish, Music)

There were local area entries along with entries from many other cities mainly due to those who came here with the Toy Run. Thanks to all the wonderful people who participate every year in the Toy Run bringing toys to the children in need and then after that they decorate their boats and join in the lighted boat parade. Because of them, our boat parade is growing and getting better every year.

The Chamber would like to thank the wonderful and very generous efforts of Bill Bahr, Jerry Karnes, and all the others who were with them who work so hard for the children in need in the area. Not only that, but they also give joy to some of us sharing their Christmas spirit with their decorated boats in the parade. Do you realize how much time and money of their own they spend doing all this and then the hours and hours in their boats? Gasoline is not cheap these days either. Their generosity is overwhelming and a simple “Thank you for all you do!” is very inadequate, but we do sincerely thank you.

BM1 Terry J. Reed, Operations Petty Officer of the U.S. Coast Guard Station in Port O’Connor was superb in all the help we received for the parade from him and all those with him. We really appreciate the U.S. Coast Guard and also sincerely thank you all.

Thanks also goes out to Mr. Jim Vass who graciously loaned us the VHF communication capability we needed.

Last, but not least, the POC Chamber thanks all those who helped in any way to put on the lighted boat parade and the judges who were put in a difficult spot deciding on the winners.

For those of you who may not know – Scott and Kelly Wheat of Port O’Connor solicited toys and donations from local businesses, trailered their boat to Matagorda to join the Toy Run group and came in with them. Their boat was also filled with toys. Afterwards, they too were in the boat parade. Good job, Scott and Kelly! And Thanks!

US Coast Guard led the parade.

Most Unique

Flags Flying in the Boat Parade

Watching from the docks



Photos by Bret Williams

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