Smith Mountain Lake holiday light flotilla and toy drive set for Saturday evening

The Virginia Dare will lead the parade from its marina to Bridgewater Plaza

SMITH MOUNTAIN LAKE, Va. – Preparations are underway for one of the most festive Christmas events on Smith Mountain Lake.

The crew of the Virginia Dare was decking out the boat in lights Friday night for the annual boat parade on Saturday. They're expecting to lead about 30 other boats across the water.

Some captains get really into it, decorating with lights and blow-up characters. But the event is about the spirit of giving. Participants and those coming out to watch are asked to bring unwrapped toys for donations.

"The intent is to make this parade as large as possible, so we get more people coming to the bridge or even coming here or to the various drop-off sites for the toys. You know it's more toys for the kids," Virginia Dare co-Owner Garret Meyer said.

Meet at the Virginia Dare Marina at 4:30 p.m. Saturday if you want to boat along, or meet at Bridgewater Plaza by 6:30 p.m. if you want to watch.

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