WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - It gets pretty competitive around Wrightsville Beach during Flotilla weekend.
Many of the boats participating stayed in hiding until the event got underway.
Captain Rick Crowder, however, was hard at work the afternoon of the flotilla, putting finishing touches on his 22-foot boat. He said he couldn't help but remember what happened a year ago.
"The whole top of my boat fell off," said Crowder. "So it was an absolute, devastating disaster."
This year, Captain Crowder is remembering the night for a different reason, since his boat led all the others.
Armed with roll upon roll of duct tape, Crowder said he "over-engineered" this time, making sure hundreds of lights, a moving reindeer, and his sign stayed put, and lit up the night.
"If all goes well, once you pull away from the starting line, it's a blast, to go by and say hello to all the people," said Crowder.
Flotilla winners were announced Sunday. The winners are as follows:
Best in Show: Paula Sturdy & Vann Marr of Wilmington for their boat, "Reel Hot"
Their entry was titled "Santa's flight under twin moonlights"
Best powerboat over 26 feet: Skip Wilson, "Bottom Line", entry was the "Wizard of Oz"
Best powerboat under 26 feet: Eric Eberhart, "Gary Nell", entry was "Santa's Guide to Wrightsville Beach"
Best Sailboat: Steve & Christy Sutton, "Seldom Seen" and "The Charlie Brown Christmas"
Best Costumes & Crew Spirit: Steve Arnold, "Wendy Lee II", "Fishing for Christmas"