Christmas Parade dazzles in downtown Port St. Joe

There were more than 100 entries in this year’s Port St. Joe Christmas Parade, which lit up Reid Avenue for more than an hour on Saturday night.

Festivities began around 3 p.m., more than three hours before the start of the parade, when downtown was closed to traffic and floats began to line up on Cecil G. Costin Boulevard. The line would eventually stretch down the street for about a mile.

Many visitors stayed out even after the parade had ended, and restaurants in downtown Port St. Joe had long waits all evening.

The float competition was split into four categories – faith based, business, family and friends, and school or non-profit organization. 

In the faith-based category, First Baptist Church brought home the first place prize. The Methodist Learning Center claimed second place and First Methodist Church was third.

The Forgotten Coast Sea Turtle Center won first place in the schools and nonprofits category. The runner-up was the R.A. Driesbach Sr. Lodge Number 77 Knights of Pythias, and North Florida Child Development took home the bronze medal.

First place in the friends and family category went to Swivel Sisters for the second year in a row, and second place was claimed by Judy Miick and friends, also for the second year in a row. Bob and Dog Haugh and Nancy Yarborugh took home the third place prize.

The St. Joseph State Buffer Preserve won the business category, followed by the Lookout Lounge and the Port St. Joe R.V. Resort.

Meet the Editor

Wendy Weitzel, The Star’s digital editor, joined the news outlet in August 2021, as a reporter covering primarily Gulf County.

Prior to then, she interned for Oklahoma-based news wire service Gaylord News and for Oklahoma City-based online newspaper during her four years at the University of Oklahoma, from which she graduated in May with degrees in online journalism and political science.

While at OU, Weitzel was selected as Carnegie-Knight News21 Investigative Fellow among 30 top journalism students from around the country. She also was senior editor managing a 12-person newsroom in coordination with Oklahoma Watch, a non-profit news organization in eastern Oklahoma.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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