“And I’m proud to be an American,
where at least I know I’m free.
And I won’t forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.”
~ Lee Greenwood ~
This is a weekend of parades around the country. Of course “small town America” has a lot of July 4th parades. And when you live in Florida, it’s not unusual to see boats as floats.
This was a 6 – mile parade route down Anna Maria Island the morning of July 4th.
People line up for miles hoping to get beads. And they didn’t mind getting wet from any “super soakers.”
The evening of July 3rd is another kind of parade in Sarasota. The Annual Parade of Boats showcases the boats that have arrived in town on the Offshore Grand Prix circuit.
The 30th Annual Suncoast Super Boat Grand Prix Festival spans over a week and culminates over the July 4th weekend with the Sarasota Boat Races on Sunday. Since 1984, this event has raised millions of dollars to build facilities for physically and mentally challenged individuals in our community.
The offshore race will cover 6 1/2 miles off Lido Key Beach. There are two heats on race day (11:00 and 1:00) and they typically last about an hour each. Fans will watch the racing boats reach 100 miles per hour on the straight-a-ways while helicopters keep a watchful eye above. The Annual Parade of Boats down Main Street on Thursday night is an opportunity for the public to see the boats up close. The boats are on display again at Powerboats by the Bay at Centennial Park on Saturday.