Fireworks & A Boat Parade . . .

After a very nice day doing pretty much nothing, Jan and I headed out about 3:45 to meet Chris, Linda, Brandi, Lowell, and Landon at Franca’s Italian Restaurant up in Clear Lake. Unfortunately Piper had to work, so she couldn’t join us.

We were getting together to have dinner and then park down on Clear Lake to watch the annual Clear Lake Boat Parade. Every year people decorate their boats and cruise around Clear Lake and then out into Galveston Bay and then back to the marina where prizes are awarded for the best looking boat in a number of different categories. We attended a number of times over the years and have always enjoyed it.

Franca’s was called Franco’s until a few years ago when the daughter took over the family restaurant from her father, Franco.

We first ate at Franco’s on December 17th, 1978. I remember the date so specifically because is was the first place we ate at after we moved here from Montgomery, AL when I went to work for NASA on the Space Shuttle.

When we first were there, Franca was just a little girl running around the restaurant. It doesn’t seem like long enough for her to have grown up and to be running things now.

But after all the buildup for going to Franca’s, Jan and I got there first and found they didn’t open until 5pm, which wouldn’t give up enough time to have a nice dinner and get to the boat parade by 6.

So I called an audible (by calling Chris and Brandi) and we moved things to Mom Alone’s Mexican Restaurant right next door. The food was good, and Landon was good (he really likes chips and salsa), so it was a very nice meal. We’ll save Franca’s for another time.

Leaving the restaurant and meeting back at Chris’, we all headed to the Lockheed building right next door where we could sit our chairs right out on the side of Clear Lake and watch the boat parade come by.

But this year they started out with a great fireworks show out over the lake that lasted for almost 10 minutes.

Boat Parade 1

Boat Parade 2

Boat Parade 3

Boat Parade 4

Boat Parade 5

Boat Parade 6

Boat Parade 7

Boat Parade 8

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And like all good firework shows, this one had a great finale.

Boat Parade 9

Boat Parade 10

Boat Parade 11

Boat Parade 12

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Then a few minutes later the boats started moving into position and headed our way. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get a lot of good boat pics. The distance was too great, and the light was too low. But I did get a few good ones.

They had everything from sailboats,

Boat Parade 14]

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to cabin cruisers,

Boat Parade 13

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to speedboats, and more.

Boat Parade 18

Boat Parade 15

Boat Parade 19

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One thing that was kind of interesting, at least for us, was that the sailboat shown before, the one with the tilted mast, got stuck in the mud. The channel is a little narrow there, and outside the channel it’s just a mud bottom, perfect to get your keel stuck in.

After the parade was over, several power boats converged and pulled him out of the mud.

Boat Parade 17

So after a really nice family evening (except for Piper) we all headed home for the night.

Looking at the weather report, it looks like winter is finally on its way. Tomorrow the high is supposed to be 81 with a low of 51. But then Monday the high is 53 with a low of 35. And that’s pretty much the way it’s supposed to stay for the next 10 days or so.

Nice.


Thought for the Day:

"Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.

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2 Responses

  1. thanks for such a nice bunch of pictures Greg yall are so incredable did,nt know bout the boat parade gotta spend some time on the water over there soon /love the desert but gotta spend winter somewhere else a bit /Judy and I plan a trip next month to fort Worth & San Antonio in our rv with our 3 cats we have almost got em talked into going /So ya Worked on nasa huh /i have 2 good friends over here in Ft Davis that worked there also /did you know Max Kandler and Jennie Krippen they are good friends of mine,Jennie is an incredable little lady involved in much here especially the humane society of Jeff Davis County /Max is very involved with the old Ft .Davis and the grandpa restoration and takes pictures for the Mountain Dispatch our local news.We love your photography and family example and information

  2. What Greg didn’t mention, and I thought was the highlight of the evening, the space station passed over us while we were sitting there! How cool is that?

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