Launch the holidays in Clark County at the Port of Camas-Washougal Christmas Ships Parade on Saturday, December 3rd. The parade starts at 6 PM - crowds assemble along the docks at the Port around 5 PM to witness this annual tradition. If the weather is bad, you can slip into the Port's office.
The Christmas Ships Parade has regaled the Portland/Vancouver region with holiday cheer since 1954. What started with a few volunteer enthusiasts has grown to a fleet of roughly 50 to 60 boats. Now two fleets sail along the Columbia and Willamette rivers - sometimes together - lighting up the water with Christmas decorations and customized lights and signs. This year the parades run from December 2nd through the 18th - the first night's parade can be viewed farther down river along Marine Drive in Portland.
You can check out the schedule and best viewing locations along each river at the Christmas Ships web site. It is a delightful show for both young and old with themes that run the gamut from traditional yuletide to whimsical nautical. It's a great way to set aside some time from your busy schedule to meet up with friends and get into the holiday mood.
This activity is a volunteer labor of love - Christmas Ship skippers donate their own fuel and time, and receive no compensation. The cost of insurance is offset by generous donations from businesses and restaurants located along the waterfront. So support the cause by booking your reservations at the sponsoring restaurants and hotels, and make sure you tell them you're coming to view the Christmas Ships.
If you want to know more about our favorite spots for viewing the Christmas Ships, just call us. We'll be glad to lighten up your holiday!