One of Alexandria’s quirkiest and longest-running holiday traditions actually began as a bet. The year was 1986 and a group of bored friends were trying to find a way to spice up their holiday season. They came up with a dare. Whichever one of them drew the short straw would have to dress up as Santa and waterski atop the frigid Potomac River on December 24th. Much to the group’s surprise (and delight), the unlucky fellow actually followed through. In fact, he had so much fun that he wanted to do it again next year—and, this time, a news crew came to capture it. Thus, Waterskiing Santa was born!
After a COVID-related hiatus in 2020 (when Santa water skied across a private lake and it was recorded for the masses), Waterskiing Santa will be back in person this December 24th! He’ll take to the water near Founders Park, as he usually does, skiing all the way down to Point Lumley Park. Catch a glimpse of him zooming by at any point on the coastline between these bookends. Then come to Waterfront Park after the main event to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus! They’ll be posing for photos and even fielding last-minute gift requests from pint-sized guests.