Jacksonville Light Boat Parade floats on desite pandemic

A Jacksonville tradition was welcomed back on Saturday night. The annual Jacksonville Light Boat Parade floated by spectators on the banks of the St. Johns River downtown, bringing boaters and a lot of fireworks in the sky.

Fortunately, the weather cooperated for the boaters who headed down to the river and the city had a spread-out map for some socially distant fun as locals tune in their car radios and watch the parade.

Joshua Stanley brought his family over from Macclenny.

“It feels real good,” Stanley said. “Got to be with family with everything going on in the pandemic.”

For others, it’s a first.

Angie and Anthony Armstrong just moved to Jacksonville in the past few months from Indiana and heard about the boat parade. They said their experience was better than up north.

“There’s such a sense of community here that I don’t remember feeling up there,” Angie Armstrong said. “It’s like people are happy down here.”

After the parade, the festivities got even brighter as fireworks could be heard from St. Nicholas to the Northside.

The Light Boat Parade has been going on for more than 30 years.

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