The Lakes at Leesburg mobile home community recently held their annual golf cart Christmas parade, and it was a huge success!
Residents showed their creativity and shared the spirit of the season by decorating their golf carts with everything from bows, garlands, lights, wrapping paper, toys and presents, to wreaths, stockings, snowflakes, Christmas trees, and more. Several residents also had VIP guests on their floats: their pups!
(Scroll to the bottom for the photo gallery!)
For added incentive, parade participants can enter the annual contest for the “Best Decorated Golf Cart”. This year’s first place winner was “The Candy Man“. The cart featured a beautiful display case in the front filled with treats, a lighted sign and huge chocolate candies on the roof, and a criss-cross of candy canes in the back. The top two winners received gift cards.
“It’s amazing to see what some of these people come up with,” Said Pam O’Grady, Four Star Homes sales agent and long-time resident of Lakes of Leesburg. “They’re so imaginative! Everyone was really excited to see the parade.”
Video: Lakes at Leesburg Annual Christmas Golf Cart Parade 2020 (Courtesy Pam O’Grady)
The 55+ community features a 9-hole, par 3 private golf course. Many residents have golf carts, and the community attracts a lot of golfers. The annual event is one that the residents look forward to, and that participants spend a lot of time planning for.
This year, the parade had 19 entries. “It was a little less than usual, but that can be expected with the way this year has been,” explained Pam.
Due to COVID-19, the event was a little different this year. The carts in the parade were spaced out more than normal. The parade went up and down all of the streets in the community, allowing residents to stand safely outside of their homes by the streets instead of gathering together. Many participants and spectators also wore masks in addition to social distancing, and the community followed CDC guidelines to ensure the safety of its residents.
It is tradition for the Lakes of Leesburg Railroad to open the parade. This year, the train car cart had two new features that wowed residents: a train whistle and an actual smoking chimney!
The highlight of the parade for many was seeing Santa. Unlike other parades that put Santa at the end of the parade, the Jolly Old Soul followed right behind the Lakes of Leesburg Railroad, pulled on his sled by 9 flying pink flamingos wearing antlers! The one in front even had a glowing red nose.
“Now THIS is Christmas, Florida style!” Pam cheerfully observed.
The Lakes of Leesburg golf cart Christmas parade is a tradition in the park, dating back as long as Pam could remember. The community also holds an annual golf cart parade on the 4th of July.
For 2020, to add a little cheer during an otherwise rough year, the community held two additional parades on Easter and Halloween.
“It was a great way to get people out of the house while also staying distanced at least six feet apart,” explained Pam.
When asked about what the parade meant to residents, Pam shared: “People look forward to it. We love seeing what others have done and being able to be social while also being safe.”
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Photo Gallery: 2020 Lakes at Leesburg Annual Golf Cart Christmas Parade (Courtesy Pam O’Grady)