HAMPTON - On December 1, cruise into the holiday spirit at the 24th annual Downtown Hampton Lighted Boat Parade. Nearly two dozen boats are expected to participate in this free nautical light show taking place on the downtown Hampton waterfront.

Beginning at 7:15 p.m., the parade of illuminated power and sail boats will be visible from anywhere along the Hampton River. However, spectators wanting to hear the narration will want to find a cozy spot near the Hampton Maritime Center. Those who don't have a boat but want to join the fun can board the Miss Hampton II tour boat. Spectators interested in riding on the Miss Hampton II are encouraged to make reservations by calling 757/722-9102. A contribution of an unwrapped toy that will be donated to Toys for Tots is appreciated.

Captains who wish to enter their vessel in the parade are encouraged to contact the Hampton Public Piers at 757/727-1276.

This year, each vessel that enters the lighted boat parade will have an opportunity to win a free dock slip during either the 14th annual Blackbeard Pirate Festival (June 1-2, 2013) or 31st annual Hampton Bay Days (Sept. 6-8, 2013). The winner of 'Best of Show' will have the choice of either event weekend.

The estimated length of the Downtown Hampton Lighted Boat Parade is 30-45 minutes. Free parking is available throughout the downtown area.

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