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OB Holiday Parade Attracts both Locals and Visitors this Season

by Max Allen

Roaring motorcycles decked with colorful lights trailing down Newport Street in Ocean Beach marked the beginning of yet another holiday parade. Soon, the night was filled with honks of car horns and live music coming from decked-out parade floats. Both sides of the street were cramped with OB locals and visitors cheering, clapping, and celebrating a vibrant return of the parade for the 43rd year of seasonal celebration.

The parade is a time for the community to come together, marking the start of the holiday season and giving support to many deserving local businesses. Raglan Public House has thrived in OB since it opened in 2012, and is heavily involved in the parade.

“It’s really one of our busiest days at the restaurant and bar, so it’s all hands on deck and everyone’s working open to close… but the energy makes it an easy day as well, because there are so many locals out and everyone is showing their appreciation to each other, to the business, and celebrating the holiday spirit,” manager Kyle Jaworski said.

Another long-time participant in the parade has been The Joint Sushi and Tapas, who were quick to join the festivities when they opened 10 years ago. Karla Manglicmot is The Joint’s general manager, and for her, “The importance [of the event] is community and how people come together. We're nothing without our friends, neighborhood and family.”

Open to anyone and entirely volunteer-run, the OB Holiday Parade depends on the support of the community. Thankfully, there is no shortage of love for the parade, as it is tied to positive memories for many.

“I’ve been watching/participating in the parade for as long as I can remember. It’s the perfect way to start the Christmas season and something I always look forward to,” said Ocean Beach local Ashley Carter.

Locals also show support for the parade by participating. Point Loma High School student Bryce McCarthy participated in the parade this year with the Point Loma marching band and shared similar sentiments.

“The OB Christmas Parade I would say is a time where our community can come together and enjoy the Christmas festivities! As someone who has both watched and participated in the parade, it’s just a great time and has always been a place of fond memories for me growing up.”

Various sports teams from Point Loma High School also come out to show their spirit.

“The OB Parade was a great experience to be part of and it was really incredible to see everyone be part of this big community event” said one member of the PL girl’s soccer team.

Attracting visitors from all over, the parade has a charm unique to OB.

“What's really cool about it [the parade] is that it really is an Ocean Beach event in the sense that it's a little bit quirky and it's a little bit janky,” Kyle Jaworski said, Something else that Kyle enjoys about Ocean Beach is that businesses are always trying to help each other out and work on events like the parade together which ultimately empowers them all.

When asked how she foresees the parade continuing to develop in the future, Manglicmot expanded on the same idea, saying, “Honestly, I've only been here for one year (myself) but … OB is such a lovely community and the roots are deep so the locals tend to come out and come back even when they have moved far away, so what I do know is that this tradition will never die.”


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