The Annual Black Hawk Lake Summer Water Carnival is held each year on the third full weekend of July. 2018 marks the 65th Annual Water Carnival, which will make 2019 the 66th anniversary celebration of this beloved event. The weekend is packed with events for the entire family, many revolving around the waters of Black Hawk Lake. What started in 1952 as a small carnival with dances and boat races has grown into an annual tradition that attracts over 20,000 visitors to the shores of Black Hawk Lake.
The Water Carnival offers many traditional festival activities and some that are unique to Lake View. Enjoy midway rides by McDermott Shows and local food/entertainment stands that open on Friday evening and run all weekend long. On both Saturday and Sunday, art and craft vendors display their wares at "Art in the Park" in Speaker Park. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the park as you view the fine woodworking, metal crafting, sewing skills, and the many other talents on display all day Saturday and Sunday morning. Interested in being a vendor? Email Connie for more information.
Our Kiddie Parade is held on the shoreline of Black Hawk lake on the sidewalk between the Stone Piers on Friday night. The Kiddie Parade has become a family tradition for many, bringing brothers, sisters, cousins, and friends together to create a parade entry celebrating summer in Lake View. Held on Friday night at 7:00 p.m., the scenic parade route runs along the shoreline of Black Hawk Lake between the Stone Piers. Participants are judged in the categories of costumes, bikes & trikes, floats and best group, with the winners garnering a coveted prize – more midway ride tickets!
Following the Kiddie Parade, "Open Mic" Karaoke takes place on the stage near the West Stone Pier and the McDermott Midway and the local food stands open. Friday is also opening night for the Black Hawk Men's Club Beverage Garden, an annual tradition that brings old friends and classmates together for fun evenings alongside Black Hawk Lake. The beverage garden is a fundraiser for the local Men's Club organization, who generously donate toward community improvement and enhancement efforts throughout the year.
Saturday is a big day! Events on Saturday's schedule include the Lion's Club Waffle Feed, the Street Parade, a pedal tractor pull and the Bill Riley Talent show.
The Street Parade begins at 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays with the American Legion and the East Sac County School band leading the way. The 12-block route down Madison Street and back up Main Street is lined with thousands of on-lookers watching the entries, screaming for candy, or trying to avoid getting soaked by the Men's Club in their traditional "rolling bathtubs" entry.
The Parade of Water Floats - the headline event of the Water Carnival - is held on Saturday on the waters of Black Hawk Lake at dusk. Boats pull decorated pontoons that are lit by generator power. The water floats follow a theme every year and local businesses sponsor the floats in a friendly competition to take home top honors. This awe-inspiring parade on the water draws tens of thousands of spectators each year.
On Sunday, visitors are treated to a wide variety of Stone Pier Stage entertainment, including the annual Little Miss Black Hawk Pageant. This pageant has crowned a Little Miss every year since 1970. Each year, girls ages 5 to 8 get dressed up in their fancy dresses and party togs as they are interviewed by the pageant MC. All of the fancy fun leads up to the announcement of Miss Congeniality, the first & second runners up, and, drum roll please...Little Miss Black Hawk! Past Little Miss winners return each year to don their sash while waving to crowds from convertibles during the Street Parade.
Another fan favorite is the annual Mud Volleyball Tournament held on Sunday afternoon. How do you make the most muddy fun in the region? Dig two giant courts around two feet deep, fill the with water from Black Hawk Lake, and send in the muddy participants! Each year, the field of 32 teams fills up quickly with groups in their themed shirts vying to be the spectator favorite. Win or lose, everyone can clean off with a refreshing dip in Black Hawk Lake.
Cap off a perfect carnival weekend by taking in a magnificent fireworks display over the waters of Black Hawk Lake. Held on Sunday night, the show dazzles visitors annually lighting up the Lake View sky.
As always, there is no admission charge to enjoy the entertainment at the Black Hawk Lake Summer Water Carnival. Come join us for one of the area's most beloved celebrations year after year!