By Becky Maxedon
One of Lake Havasu City’s iconic holiday events happens Saturday evening at 6 p.m., in the Bridgewater Channel. The 37-year-old Christmas Boat Parade of Lights has been guided by JJ Gibbs since 2020 when he took the rudder.
Holiday lights will adorn boats as they glitter and glisten through the famed Bridgewater Channel under the London Bridge.
Prizes will be given to: Best of Show, Judges’ Choice, Wildcard Entry, Best Family or Individual Entry, Best Business Entry, and Best First Time Entry.
Gibbs said there are from 68-70 entries for this edition of the parade.
“We have the best sponsors you could ask for and without them, the parade would not be possible,” Gibbs said.
Any proceeds from the parade are donated to local charities, Gibbs said. “We have great local nonprofits.”
There is no charge to view the Boat Parade. Plenty of free parking is available at the English Village and in the parking areas on the island near the Channel. Plan to get there early as traffic around the London Bridge can become congested.
There are some guidelines to follow while attending the event.
Absolutely no wood burning fires are allowed on any of the Bridgewater Channel beaches or the Lake Havasu State Park beaches.
Lake Havasu State Park will once again be providing free access to Channel Beach for the Christmas Boat Parade of Lights.
The park will also be providing a limited number of fire pits. For those of you wanting to view the parade from Windsor Beach (Lake Havasu State Park) please read the below information, be respectful and follow the below guidelines.
– The Paseo Del Sol gate of Windsor #4 at Lake Havasu State Park will be open for free admission starting at 4 p.m. This will be the only gate providing complimentary access.
– The restrooms will be open for public use.
– Propane fire rings and grills will be permitted.
– Dogs are not permitted on the white sand beach and people are encouraged to leave their pets at home.
– All children must be accompanied by an adult.
For those viewing the parade from the beaches of the Bridgewater Channel please read the information below. It is recommended to arrive early and bring a chair if you plan to spectate from the beach.
– There will be no mooring of boats allowed along the Bridgewater Channel beaches beginning at 4pm the day of the parade. In past years with boats trying to leave during the parade it has caused to much congestion with the flow of the parade. Beginning at 4pm on Saturday LHCD and MCSO will begin sweeping the channel to clear it for the parade.
– There will be no fire pits provided along the channel as in past years and wood burning fires are not permitted. In past years people have not properly cleaned up after having fires so they will not be allowed.
– Propane fire pits are OK.
– Pick up any trash you have regardless of where you are viewing the parade from.
-The best handicap parking is along the Bridgewater Channel on the dog park side, inside Rotary Park, and inside Lake Havasu State Park.
-If you cannot walk long distances it is recommended to have somebody drop you off near your preferred viewing spot and park the vehicle after doing so.
-People begin setting up early in the morning and saving spots. Plan accordingly for an optimal viewing location.