1929, Governor C.C. Young stated, "It's one of the most beautiful things I have ever
seen! I think its most charming feature is its freedom from commercialism."
It was 1913 when the enterprising
Walter Gustin promoted an event featuring lighted boats which was called the Illuminated
Water Parade, and prizes were awarded. Similar events were staged again in 1919 and 1920,
resulting in the establishment of the "Balboa Tournament of Lights" in 1921.
While support for this event came from
both the Island and the Peninsula. Soon there were fleets of rowboats, canoes, and small
sailboats. Even motorboats, power cruisers and large auxiliaries became a common sight.
By 1929, scores of decorated and
illuminated power craft were towing their quota of small craft. As each tournament
followed, the decorations became more varied and imaginative.
In 1929, Governor C.C. Young stated,
"It's one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen! I think its most charming
feature is its freedom from commercialism."
Today's Christmas Boat Parade has over
a hundred boats and draws thousands of people each night of its run through the last week
This year there is expected to be over
250 boats in the parade.
To get more information about riding
in the boat parade contact:
Catalina Passenger Service
Fun Zone Boat Co.
Newport Landing Sport Fishing
Balboa Christmas Tree
Our thanks to the firefighters at the
Balboa Fire Station for lighting the
Balboa Christmas Tree again this year
"Don't mess with
presents or you'll get a rap in the mouth".
Big Al Landis At The Class of 47
It was a rainy day just before
Christmas in the late 1980s when the unarmed man walked into the Class of 47 - a Balboa
drinking establishment noted in the local press for being one of the top ten dives in the
county. The man was unarmed not from not having a weapon, but because he had no arms. His
left arm had been amputated at the shoulder, and his right arm had been amputated just
below the elbow.
The stranger ordered a shot of gin
from Big Al the bartender and was served. He picked up the glass with the inside stub of a
his elbow, downed the shot, and spit on the floor. Big Al suspected this man was going to
be trouble and asked for payment. At this point the armless man said that he had no money.
Because it was the Christmas Season, Big Al was going let the man go without paying, when
suddenly he spit on the floor again. This infuriated Big Al who went out and flagged down
a cop. The man was taken outside and placed under arrest. The cop when arresting the man,
pulled out his handcuffs, stopped, and with a sheepish grin put the handcuffs back, and
ordered the unarmed man into the backseat of the police car.
Gets Pay Toilets
Miss. Bonnie Shows Off Her First Dollar Earned In Her New Drive-Up Pay Toilet
Business On Main Street.
Miss Bonnie has finally gone into
business for herself with Miss. Bonnie's Main Street Pay Toilets. Bonnie words it this
way,"I've always known there was a need for this business, so I saved up my money and
started it." Bonnie has a very positive outlook about her new business, "With
everyone so busy for Christmas the convenience of my
Main Street Pay Toilets will be a big plus. I've had a brisk bushiness selling Christmas
gift certificates. And the coupon books are doing well. Everyone likes the idea of
two free coupons in the book of twelve."
The next time you're on Main Street,
stop by and treat yourself at Miss. Bonnie's.