NEWBURYPORT — Beds dressed up as a boat, school bus, a giant cobra and even the Grinch's sleigh flew down Federal Street on Thursday evening in the annual Newburyport Lions Club Bed Race

About 20 teams took part in the race, which saw beds racing seven blocks down Federal Street and past throngs of people from High to Liberty streets.

Last year's winner, the Rowley Police Department, did not field a team this year, leaving Sea Level Oyster Bar to take tops honors with a time of 1 minute, 17 seconds.

"This is incredible," Sea Level server Erin Freeman said. "It wasn't the plan but we are so happy we won."

"This is (very) awesome," said fellow server Tyler Thompson. 

Rocket Insights came in second with its rocket ship bed at 1:20 and the Newburyport Fire Department came in third with its fireboat bed at 1:25:25.

Software engineering consulting company Raybeam Inc. was the visual hit of the show with its "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" themed bed that included about 20 employees dressed as Whos handing out candy canes, and of course, the Grinch himself riding on top of a bag full of purloined presents.

"This is the entire Whoville," said Raybeam CEO Dong Soo Anderson-Song. "We tried to snow but we had to substitute bubbles. It's all for the kids."

Theater in the Open presented its traditional circus-themed bed, compete with a talking giraffe, circus clowns and acrobats.

Firebrand Technologies fielded a Goldilocks and the Three Bears themed bed complete with Goldilocks and the three bears chasing her in the "just right" bed.

Dale Granger-Eckert of the Alzheimer’s Association fielded a bed she found recently on Lime Street and painted it purple and yellow.

"I found this about a month ago," Granger-Eckert said. "We've done the Yankee Homecoming Parade for about 10 years, but we decided to do the bed race this year. It's much more fun."

The Grog made up a bed to look like the popular TV series "Stranger Things", which stars a former waiter there, Joe Keery.

"This is a tribute, if you will," waitress Tarren Alves said. "We are running for whatever gets us a win and to be stylish."

Staff writer Jim Sullivan covers Amesbury and Salisbury for The Daily News. He can be reached via email at or by phone at 978-961-3145. Follow him on Twitter @ndnsully.

REFER: History comes alive with walking tour, Page 3.

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