The Boats Are Back In Town For Ocean City’s Night In Venice Parade
Posted on July 24, 2022
By Selena Vazquez, The Press of Atlantic City
OCEAN CITY — Thousands of people gathered along the bay side of the island to catch a glimpse of dozens of boats during the 67th annual Night in Venice, the longest-running celebration of its kind.
Sponsored by Acme Markets, Night in Venice is a celebration of community and camaraderie that Ocean City has been putting on since 1954, according to the city’s Welcome Center. It brings tens of thousands of people to Ocean City during the weekend of the parade.
Kevin Hacke drove seven hours from Dayton, Ohio, with his wife, Ali, and 1½-year-old daughter, Karsyn, just to watch the parade. The family planned its boat parade weekend more than a month ago when the schedule was released.
“There’s a sense of community and togetherness,” said Hacke, 32, who met another family from Ohio while at the 15th Street and Pleasure Avenue bay area before the parade started. “Meeting different people, seeing a lot of different boats … it’s a fun time.”
Hacke has been coming to Night in Venice with his family since he was 5, and to the exact same spot he went to Saturday evening.
This year’s grand marshals were Jay Wright, the legendary and recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach, and his wife, Patty, who were joined on their very large boat by family members. The parade started near the Ocean City-Longport bridge and traveled along the bayside to Tennessee Avenue, going in and out of inlets and lagoons.
Boats were uniquely dressed with lights, music and banners that showed the crowds of people watching along the shore their number for a chance to win in a number of contests. Some opted to decorate their boats in coordination with this year’s theme — “Mummers: Struttin’ on the Bay” — which was chosen as a tribute to Ocean City’s Tuesday nights on the Boardwalk and the Philadelphia New Year’s Day parade that showcases colorfully dressed string bands dancing along Broad Street.
People could view the free parade from the first-come, first served grandstands on Tennessee Avenue or at any of the other grandstands along the ends of the streets from Battersea Road to 16th Street. Parade watchers could also set up their own seating along the parade route, although seats were not permitted on any of the bridges.
Right next to the bay at 15th Street and Pleasure Avenue, a group of about 30 people filled the grandstands and the surrounding area with wagons, golf carts and portable chairs. People who lived in the surrounding homes sat on their decks and in their boats as they waited patiently for the parade’s late start.
Jana Klotzain, of Wall Township, Monmouth County, came with her husband, Stephen, and 4½-year-old daughter, Elaina, to watch the parade.
“Ocean City is a beautiful, fun place to come with family and friends. I’m really looking forward to this weekend,” said Klotzain, who said she looked forward to seeing the boats, friends and the entertainment afterward.
Tickets were sold out for the Bayside Center’s viewing area Saturday, which included a picnic area, bleacher seating, a DJ, live entertainment by the Uptown String Band and food, proceeds from which benefited the Ocean City Junior Raiders football and cheerleading squads.
Night in Venice has contests in which boats, houses and condominium complexes can participate in a variety of categories, such as best boat or best decorated house. A panel of judges announced the results Sunday.
In addition to Saturday’s parade, the city celebrated with a Junior Night in Venice boat parade for children Friday and a Miss Night in Venice beauty pageant last Monday.
After the parade, fireworks were launched from a barge on the bay near Third Street.
Night in Venice weekend was scheduled to end Sunday with “America’s Got Talent” runner-up Jackie Evancho performing with the Ocean City Pops at the Music Pier.
“Honestly, in this crazy world we live in now, I think everyone here has one thing in common, and that’s to see the boats. It’s a fun time,” Hacke said.
PHOTOS Ocean City’s Night in Venice
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. (center l-r) Jay and Patty Wright riding in the second spot of the parade surrounded by family and friends. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. (l-r) Miss Ocean City Madden Randazzo, Junior Miss Ocean City McKenna Flemming, and Little Miss Ocean City Ariana Di’Antonio. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. Mummer Stephen Caldwell, 24, from Bucks County PA, ready to cheer on several of the Mummer boats scheduled to pass through. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
Recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and his family, including wife Patty, cruise in the second spot of Ocean City’s 67th annual Night in Venice boat parade Saturday night. MATTHEW STRABUK PHOTOS, FOR THE PRESS
Boat No. 299 had one of the more unique decorations of the Night in Venice parade in Ocean City on Saturday night. Flying a Nova Nation flag, it was done up as a semi-trailer truck making deliveries. MATTHEW STRABUK, FOR THE PRESS
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. (l-r) Ocean City residents Carrie Peake, Torie Fanueli, 14, and Madison Hart, 14, at the Bayside Center on 5th street wait for the flotilla to pass. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. Boat #299 had one of the more unique decorations of the evening, as a Semi-Trailer Truck making delivieries. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
On July 23 2022, in Ocean City, the annual Night in Venice boat parade was held with recently retired Villanova University men’s basketball coach Jay Wright and Patty Wright in attendance. Dancing with the Stars dancers Keo Motsepe and Anna Trebunskaya, in town having performed at the Music Pier for their Motown with a Twist show. MATTHEW STRABUK FOR THE PRESS
Boat number, name of the boat, family’s name and theme
Best in show 25’ and over: #258, Lusea Rose, Badagliacco, Elvis in Venice
Best in show 24’ and under: #265, Heading West, Gillespie, Hungry Dogs Gotta Eat
Best lead boat: #202, On A Roll, Eni, Jay & Patty Wright
Best commercial: #215, Beachy Tiki, OCNJ Watersports, Tiki Party
Best nonprofit: #217, Reel Fun, Reel Fun Fishing, OCTC
Best Decorated 25’ and over
1st Place: #268, Rafetto, Standing Up For Ukraine
2nd Place: #298, Shanti, Toner, A Roaring 20’s New Years Eve
3rd Place: #294, Shore Bet, Mancill, Pirates of the Caribbean
Best Decorated 24’ and under
1st Place: #256, That’s What Sea Said, Young, A Tribute to Coach Jay Wright
2nd Place: #309, Water Wheels, Wheeler, Fly Eagles Fly
3rd Place: #273, The Crazy Q2, Quigley, Mummers
Comic 25’ and over
1st Place: #251, Whiteside, World’s Most Fuel Efficient Cars
Comic 24’ and under
1st Place: #237, At Last, Marshall, Angry Birds
2nd Place: #249, Lady Grady, Foge, Thanksgiving Turkey
Musical 25’ and over
1st Place: #231, Barracuda, Del Monte, Duffy String Band
2nd Place: #209, Wrecking Crew Fishing, Duffy String Band
3rd Place: #200, Only Fins, LaBove, Uptown String Band
Musical 24’ and under
1st Place: #250, Foxy Lady, McManus, Patriotic
2nd Place: #225, Little Whaler, Bergen, The Summer Mummers
3rd Place: #206, Jersey Boy Charters, Avena, South Philly String Band
Original 25’ and over
1st Place: #307, Eliza-Gail, Higgins, Chips Ahoy
2nd Place: #214, Mamma Mia, Angstadt, Top Gun Movie
3rd Place: #293, Marabella, Marques, Disco Nights
Original 24’ and under
1st Place: #299, Scott Built, MacMillian, Truck on Water Supply Boat
2nd Place: #292, The Everglades, Rizxo, PACman in Venice
3rd Place: #312, Brown Eyed Girls, Terry, Livin’ On A Prayer
#, Last Name, Theme
1st Place: #65, Hornyak, Boot Scootin’ Boogie
2nd Place: #82, Desrosiers, Irish Mummer Summer
3rd Place: #78, Delibertis, Depp’s Mad Hatter
1st Place: #132, Gabriel, This Ain’t My First Rodeo
2nd Place: #120, Eni, Coach Wright Struttin’ Through The Bay
3rd Place: #81, Haydinger, Dancing in The Street!
1st Place: #143, Tamburri/Wolfe, Mummers in Venice
2nd Place: #157, Colsher, Mama Mia
3rd Place: #109, Kelly, Kelly’s Summer Mummers
1st Place: #28, Hernandez, Pleasure Struttin’
2nd Place: #42, Bellwoar, Par-Tee on the Bay Fore Night In Venice
3rd Place: #52, Thornton, Mummers & Nova
1st Place: #99, Thornton, Broad Street on The Bay!
2nd Place: #88, Weber, Ballin’ in Ocean City
3rd Place: #159, Forte, Summer Mummers-City Hall to OC
1st Place: #39, Chiumento, NIV of the Mummering Dead
2nd Place: #131, Myers, Flying High in Ocean City
3rd Place: #117, Gifford, West Chester University
1st Place: #69, Miller, Top Gun
2nd Place: #64, Juliana, Struttin’ Into “30”
3rd Place: #156, Scanlons/Brandenberges, Jay Wright’s Retirement
1st Place: #118, Dorney/Hicke, Wonderland By Knight
2nd Place: #151, Kolea, Aloha Jay Wright
3rd Place: #84, Michaelis, Ukranian Mummers on The Bay
1st Place: #92, Maxwell, OC is out of this World
2nd Place: #91, Hoffman, OC Hits it out of the Park!
3rd Place: #71, LaValla, Flags on the Venetian Bayou
1st Place: #131, Vaules, Kelce is Out Favorite Mummer
2nd Place: #32, Church, Struttin’ On The Bay
3rd Place: #13, Gregory, Mardi Gras!
1st Place: #20, Huber, St. Patty’s In July
2nd Place: #101, Ruh, Pirates of Sunny Harbor!
3rd Place: #31, O’Flynn, Pirates Parading The Mummers
1st Place: #72, Seeburger, Life in OC is Flamazing
2nd Place: #154, Votta, Dino Dock
3rd Place: #19, Cassidy, Mummer Summer
1st Place: #80, VanStone, Celebrating Philly
2nd Place: #60, Rafetto, Great Gatsby
3rd Place: #140, Barnett, Oktoberfest on Bay
Zone 14 (Best Condo/Commercial)
1st Place: #79, Harbor House, Peace, Love and Harbor Happiness!
2nd Place: #77, Bay Club Condos, Mardi Gras at the Bay(ou) Club
3rd Place: #17, Marina Mews, Struttin’ With Marina Mews