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City of Tampa to hold Bolts Stanley Cup boat parade Monday

If the 2021 celebration is anything like last year, fans are in for a wild ride.

TAMPA, Fla. — It's back! The Tampa Bay Lightning will once again celebrate their Stanley Cup championship win with a boat parade.

The Bolts secured their spot in NHL history Wednesday night when they became back-to-back Stanley Cup champs by beating the Montreal Canadiens 1-0.

Now, the City of Tampa says fans will be able to celebrate their home team's victory along the Hillsborough River on Monday, July 12.

Why not the weekend? Lightning owner Jeff Vinik's son is getting married this weekend, and Tampa Mayor Jane Castor says the parade couldn't be held without the man who helped make it all possible.

Beginning around 10 a.m., players will be ushered onto boats at Davis Islands. The goal is to have the parade off and sailing by 11 a.m. Monday.

It will follow the same route as last year. You can find a map of the parade route here.

"Our fans will be able to line up along the Riverwalk, through our parks," Mayor Castor said.

The mayor joked that "hopefully" the Stanley Cup won't end up in the water, a reference to the time Tom Brady tossed the Lombardi Trophy after the Buccaneers' Super Bowl victory in Tampa.

The boat parade will end around noon or 1 p.m. at Rick's on the River.

After docking, players will hop on trolleys and ride to Julian B Lane Riverfront Park for a community celebration, complete with food trucks, drinks, entertainment and music. Players will take the stage there sometime after 2 p.m. The park is opening up at 9 a.m. for fans.

Last year, 2020 gave "Champa Bay" the glorious discovery of a boat parade full of Cup hoisting, jet ski riding and players testing out their sea legs on land. And if the 2021 celebration is anything like last year, fans are in for a wild ride.

"Champa Bay knows how to celebrate," Hillsborough County Commissioner Pat Kemp said.

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