With no holiday parades on the streets or a boat parade of lights this season due to COVID-19 concerns and closures, local paddlers decided to spread some cheer and raise money for a local nonprofit organization with a holiday paddle through the Santa Barbara Harbor and along West Beach on Sunday.
The inaugural Santa Barbara Holiday Paddle, organized by the Facebook group Paddle Santa Barbara, was a fundraiser for CALM (Child Abuse Listening Mediation).
The paddle was rescheduled to Sunday due to high winds in the area Saturday.
“Much better day on the water today,” said event organizer Donna Davirro. “It was calm seas and no wind. People all along the waterfront and those on their boats thanked us for doing this.”
She added that the paddle raised more than $600 for CALM.
Participants on stand-up paddle boards, kayaks and a row boat dressed up in holiday costumes for the event. There were elves, reindeer, snow angels, a snow woman, Santa’s helpers and a lean Saint Nick.
“Yes, we cheered people up,” Davirro said.
— Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.
(Barry Punzal / Noozhawk video)