by Shayne Benowitz

The iconic Sloppy Joe's ready for the holidays.

The iconic Sloppy Joe’s ready for the holidays.

Key West's flagship, the Western Union, with the Grinch.

Key West’s flagship, the Western Union, with the Grinch.

Fury's Big Chill... Coming Soon!

Fury’s Big Chill… Coming Soon!

The Lighted Boat Parade is a tradition that draws onlookers to the Key West Harbor every year. Gliding across the dark night ocean is an enchanting light show of Christmas trees scaling masts and boat captains dressed as Santa Claus.

For the last week at Fury, our Lighted Boat Parade Committee was busy at work creating lighted decorations in the shapes of palm trees, peace signs, hammocks, and flowers. For the parade, crewmembers dressed in special tie dyed Fury shirts. Every passenger was handed a present with a commemorative t-shirt and peace sign necklace. Across the boat’s sides “THE BIG CHILL” was scrawled in white lights.

What, you might ask, was going on at Fury with all of this flower power, peace, love, and understanding? Well, all I can tell you is come February Fury’s Big Chill will be an enticing new trip not to be missed!

Passengers boarded the boat and enjoyed complimentary eggnog while they became a part of this Key West holiday tradition. I met Nicole at the marina as she finished loading passengers and we headed to the Historic Seaport for a waterfront dinner and a spectacular view of the festivities. The Seaport was definitely buzzing with activity from Turtle Kraals all the way over to the Conch Farm as so many familiar boats lined up in a parade of holiday cheer.

Shayne Benowitz is a Fury crewmember and freelance writer working on her debut novel. For more travel stories and a daily dose of what’s cool around the globe visit her Wanderlust Website at

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Last Updated 10/29/2021