For many years, the St. Croix Christmas Boat Parade Committee has given the people of St. Croix the gift of an annual lighted boat parade to kick off the Christmas season. When the Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands canceled the March 31st USVI Transfer Day Centennial fireworks display due to financial difficulties, Sal Sanpere, Boat Parade chairman, started raising funds to provide fireworks for the celebration on St. Croix.
The goal was to bring the people of St. Croix together to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the day Denmark formally ceded (transferred) the Danish West Indies to the United States. A huge crowd, including many tourists who booked their holiday specifically for the occasion, witnessed the largest display of fireworks ever seen in Christiansted Harbor.
Additionally, the Committee bought 150 3’ x 5’ flags (50 each: USA, USVI and Danish), which were installed on boardwalk light posts and distributed to the boats in the harbor to fly. More flags were displayed on the BrewSTX upstairs VIP area. A larger 7’x10’ flag decorated the Comanche Sugar Mill, and a display of “100” in LED lights adorned the top of the Mill. Adjacent to the Mill, the Committee brought music by the 28-piece Copenhagen Brass Ensemble to the boardwalk crowd, including an amazing solo played on a conch shell.
The Committee coordinated with Seaborne Airlines for a seaplane decked with flags to taxi through the harbor, to the cheers of thousands on the boardwalk, and coordinated with the CRRA Jump-Up and with Eddie Russell’s Jazz in the Park to make a celebration fitting the occasion.
There are many to thank for making this once-in-a-lifetime event a huge success. A list of the donors and volunteers is below. Apologies to those unnamed – your efforts are also much appreciated.
The St. Croix Christmas Boat Parade is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization (EIN: 66-0768243), comprised entirely of volunteers. Save the date for the Christmas Boat Parade, December 9, 2017!
Thank you for your support. We couldn’t have done it without:
Donors: Abramson Bus Company, Limetree Bay Terminals, Diageo USVI, Sal Sanpere – Olympic Rent-A-Car, D I A M Management, Andrew & Mary Sloane, Lorraine Durand, Douglas & Jeanine Schrock, Green Cay Marina, TEAM Consultants, Joel H. Holt, Tropical Shipping, Mt. Welcome Pharmacy, and an anonymous donor
Contributors, Helpers, Assistants: Caribbean Printing & Marketing, Trish Rhodes, Comanche Sugar Mill, Jeff & Dawn Rudolph, Billy Desmond, Kamal Russell, Fire Marshall Johnny Frontal, Ellen Sanpere, Island Delivery Service, Jeanine Sanpere, Frankie Johnson, Seaborne Airlines, Patrick Kralik CRRA, Derek Shupe – BrewSTX, Police Chief Winsbut McFarlande, St. Croix Yachting Center, Joseph Noel, Tropical Shipping, Doc Peterson, USCG Auxiliary, Jack Pickle, Dave Ziemer, USVI Port Authority, St. Croix radio and press
Fireworks: Chris Liberatore – Pyrotechnico, Billy Desmond, Edgar Bengoa, Steve Boatswain, Bart Adema, Lincoln Merrill, Rubin Dowling, Tony Sanpere, and Jack Down
Sal Sanpere and Trish Rhodes of St. Croix