stretch of Highway 12 from Teach’s Lair Marina to the Hatterasman was
packed with families well before the 2 p.m. start time on Dec. 10. Many
folks had smartly placed lawn chairs and Santa hats, and the onlookers
who arrived early to get a great view were not disappointed.
35 participants were represented at this year’s parade, which included
local businesses, community organizations, area volunteer fire
departments, government agencies, and much, much, more.
entire parade lasted less than an hour, with ample brief pauses so that
the festive folks onboard a passing float or vehicle could toss out
candy and other treasures to the crowds of kids who were happy to
collect the goods.
is more candy than he got at Halloween,” said one dad whose son had an
overflowing Dollar Tree bag by the time the parade had ended. “He is
not going to sleep for a week.”
while the candy, stuffed animals, balls, books, and beads were a big
hit with the parade’s youngest visitors, the vast spectrum of vehicles
and floats that participated in the parade awed spectators of all ages.
parade was led by Dare County Sheriff Doug Doughtie, followed by the
vintage Conner’s Supermarket car and the Hatteras Hurricanes marching
band, which played a roster of holiday favorites to continual applause.
After this first wave of action, the parade steadily breezed by with
brightly decked-out fire trucks, several U.S. Coast Guard boats and
other vessels, appropriately nautical floats, and many more surprising
of the most enjoyable aspects of the Hatteras Village Christmas Parade
for many locals is the many ties and nods to our beach landscape, a
theme which was very evident this year. The parade entries also
included some memorable -- and sometimes poignant -- nods to the
village’s recovery after Hurricane Matthew.
float had an incredibly intricate diorama of the Hatteras Village
landscape – complete with sand dunes and a water tower – with a sign on
the lead vehicle that read “Our Hatteras Island Christmas Wish: No
Realty, which ended up winning the grand prize for best float, also got
in the recovery spirit with a display that tied together Hatteras
village and the popular 2016 movie “Finding Dory,” thanks to the
message of “Just Keep Swimming.” Nemo, Dory, and other Pixar characters
flanked an orange octopus, whose tentacles were held up by a few
crowd-pleasing participants included Surf or Sound Realty, whose
pick-up was almost invisible because of towering clusters of balloons;
Hatteras Realty, which boasted a happy snowman enjoying the beach;
Floral Creations / Shore Details, which featured a seaworthy
gingerbread house / vacation home, and the Girl Scouts, whose snowy
float was flanked by hordes of young penguins and snow persons.
Cape Hatteras Lighthouses either drove or strolled down the parade
route as well, which included a walking lighthouse as part of the
National Park Service entry, and an eye-catching lighthouse float
bordered by waves from Outer Banks Family Medicine in Avon.
course, the parade also had a few entries that showcased the island’s
inherent sense of humor, starting with the “Crazy Cat Ladies” of the
local organization Friends of Felines, who strutted down Highway 12 in
bathrobes and hair rollers, with small stuffed animals affixed to their
Cape Hatteras Anglers Club also has a fun take on Santa and his sleigh,
courtesy of a giant fish ridden by a bikini clad “model,” and the Avon
Volunteer Fire Department kept the crowd on its toes with a truck that
sporadically spit out big streams of water – which gratefully never
landed on the chilly spectators.
participants -- such as the Fessenden Center and its teamwork float,
the Munchkin Academy and its sleigh, and the Hatteras Island Cancer
Foundation, the Hatteras Island Christian Fellowship, and the Hatteras
Island CERT team -- all brought cheers and acclaim from the crowds, for
their candy, decorations, and their overwhelming community spirit.
Hatteras Electric Cooperative trucks, a U.S. Post Office truck, a
go-kart piled with presents, two Coast Guard vessels, and a lineup of
fire trucks from up and down the island clearly impressed the kids in
the crowd, and the parade ended – as it traditionally does – with Santa
Claus waving to the crowd from the back of a Hatteras village fire
entire show only took just a half hour or so, but a number of people
commented that it was one of the best parades yet. This was especially
true for the youngest spectators, who had acquired full bags of candy
and other prizes in just a 30-minute time frame.
the parade, the spirit of Hatteras village was still wonderfully
visible, and awards were given out on a “dais” in front of the Hatteras
Village Library that consisted of a somewhat sideways abandoned boat
and a sign that read “It Takes a Village.”
2016 PARADE WINNERS
First Place: Midgett Realty for its “Hatteras Strong / Just Keep Swimming!” float.
Second Place: The Hatteras Island Girl Scouts for their "Snowy Landscape."
Third Place: Terry and April for their “No Flooding in Hatteras” village landscape.