Gasparilla Recap: Mario Lopez & Command Sergeant Major Faris Rock Grand Marshal Role

In case you missed one of the biggest parade’s in the United States, we’ve got a pretty rockin’ recap for you.

The two Grand Marshals, Mario Lopez and U.S. Army Command Sergeant Major Chris Faris definitely brought positive attention to this iconic event in our community.

Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa is truly proud to be the title sponsor that raised funds and awareness for Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla Community Fund for the entire month of January. We are committed to giving back and will continue to benefit a local organization each month.

The record setting parade took place on Saturday, January 31 and our float included 2015 Seminole Hard Rock Girls, Tampa Bay Rowdies players and Seminole Hard Rock team members.

Did you happen to see Mario Lopez flashing his bright, white smile and those iconic dimples in his convertible that led our float? The Extra TV host generated quite the buzz this weekend both at the parade and the casino. Let’s face it, he was kind of hard to miss.

Both Friday and Saturday evening, Mario Lopez dined with us at Council Oak Steaks & Seafood, then got comfy in the Hard Rock Cafe to jam out with our local musicians.

Mario Lopez shared the Grand Marshal duties with Sergeant Major Chris Faris, who is the former senior enlisted advisor to the Commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base.

Sergeant Major Chris Faris was equally hard to miss in his very own convertible with his decorated uniform, including a Purple Heart award that he received in 1993 after being injured in Somalia. In addition, he is honored with seven Bronze Stars.

This year’s event featured the 100th Gasparilla Invasion and Parade of the Pirates, presented by Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla, as well as the Gasparilla Pirate Fest Street Festival.  Until next year!