Christmas parade carts of fun in Lakewood Ranch.
As Esplanade Golf and Country Club's Kathie Gruber watched Santa and Mrs. Claus pull away on the last golf cart of Esplanade's community Christmas parade Dec. 3, she couldn't help but grin. It had been quite the show with motorcycles, a firetruck, dozens of decorated golf carts and even the Lakewood Ranch High School Marching Band.
One group of parade walkers even passed out cranberry martinis, which they carried on platters as they walked.
"It was amazing," Gruber said of the parade. "Some of the neighbors put so much work into this."
As part of the festivities, Esplanade residents made donations to Marine Toys for Tots, which provides new unwrapped toys to less fortunate children at Christmas. The efforts raised $1,000 and four truck loads of toys for the organization.