Pensacola, Florida
Friday October 24th 2014

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Fiesta’s Big Saturday on the Beach

by Jessica Forbes

In Pensacola, late May and early June mark the culmination of Fiesta of Five Flags season. The Fiesta of Five Flags has been celebrated in Pensacola and on Pensacola Beach since 1950 as a way to mark the beginning of summer for locals and tourists alike. The Fiesta Parade (scheduled this year on Thursday, June 5 at 6:30 p.m.) held downtown caps off the series of community events, but the Saturday before holds big events and long-standing Fiesta traditions as well.

The Fiesta Boat Parade begins the day’s activities at 1 p.m., when at least 25 vessels will make their way from the mouth of the Bayou Chico Bridge to Pensacola Beach, following the boat carrying this year’s DeLuna and Queen.

The community is welcome to join the procession of boats escorting Don Tristan de Luna’s yacht for a chance to win cash prizes for the best decorated sport or sports team boat. Judging will take place as boats pass under the Bob Sikes Bridge on the way to Quietwater Boardwalk.

At 3 p.m., the DeLuna Landing Ceremony will take place at the Quietwater Beach Amphitheater where DeLuna and Queen will be welcomed to the beach by the Mayoki Indians, a social group formed in the 1960s, in what Fiesta calls “a lighthearted reenactment of what might have happened when DeLuna and his party landed.”

The landing ceremony kicks off the Fiesta Beach Bash, which also starts at 3 p.m. just a few doors down from Quietwater Boardwalk at Flounder’s Chowder House. All spectator boats and participants in the Fiesta Boat Parade are invited to anchor behind Flounder’s for live entertainment, drink specials and to see the winners of the boat decorating contest. Then it’s a party on the beach and a countdown to the parade downtown Thursday.

DeLuna Landing Ceremony, 3 p.m.
Quietwater Beach Amphitheater
400 Quietwater Beach Road

Fiesta Beach Bash, 3—6 p.m.
Flounder’s Chowder House
800 Quietwater Beach Road

For more information about Fiesta of Five Flags, visit: fiestaoffiveflags.org.