By Max Hrenda
While Elizabethton’s Independence Day parade will handle festivities on land, Carter County’s boating enthusiasts will have a chance to celebrate more nautically.
At 2 p.m., one hour after the start of the Elizabethton 4th of July Parade, the 13th Annual Boat Parade will begin at Watauga Dam.
Event organizer Terry Arnold said that in addition to celebrating the nation’s birthday, the parade gives county residents a chance to celebrate one of the area’s natural treasures.
“We’ve got one of the prettiest lakes around,” Arnold said. “I don’t know why anybody, if they were wanting to go to a lake, would go to any other lake around. Watauga Lake is just gorgeous.”
Arnold, who has participated in all 13 parades, said that, historically, the event has drawn a significant crowd.
“Normally, there’s a big turnout,” Arnold said. “People need to come early if they’re going to try to get seats in the picnic areas. Hopefully, this year the weather will cooperate and we’ll have a good time.”