In July 7 IssueBy Kim GrahamTimes Journal Reporter
Lake Cumberland celebrated America's 235th birthday with beautiful weather for outdoor activities and bountiful visitors to enjoy Independence Day merriment.
"We were jam-packed everywhere for the 4th of July weekend," Russell County Tourist Commission Marketing Director John Carter said. "This was the best weekend we've had this year at Lake Cumberland."
All events and attractions were slammed including Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery and Lakefest in Jamestown Carter said.
"The more the merrier," said Carter. "It seemed jus t like the good ol' days with so many people visiting."
Around the campgrounds, resorts, and marinas, the latest holiday weekend showed increased attendance and retail sales.
"July 4th weekend was super," said Alligator II Marina Manager James Flatt. "It was one of the best crowds I've seen."
Flatt said they rented every boat and every cabin. With the exception of two unoccupied campsites, they were completely full at Alligator II Marina and KOA Campgrounds.
"We've had two good holiday weekends," said Flatt "It's the best July 4th we've had in four or five years."
People spent more money this year than last and despite the nearly $1 increase in gas prices, Alligator II sold more gas than last year Flatt said.
Lake Cumberland State Dock Human Resources Manager Debbie Schumann echoed Flatt's assessment of the holiday weekend.
"July 4th went very well at the State Dock," said Schumann. "We had a huge crowd for Caught Red Handed."
She said they were very busy all weekend with most of State Dock's rentals out for the holiday and boatels at the dock occupied.
Up the hill from the State Dock, Lake Cumberland State Resort Park was bustling with holiday guests.
"We had a great holiday weekend at Lake Cumberland State Resort Park," said Park Manager Eddie Moore. "There were a lot of people out on the lake having a good time."
Moore said the campground was full all weekend long and the rest of the park was at 100 percent capacity Saturday and Sunday and 85 percent Friday.
"We served about 1,000 people Saturday and Sunday in the Rowena Landing Restaurant," Moore said.
Across the lake at Jamestown Resort and Marina, Controller John Meincken said they were full to capacity.
"We were pretty pleased with July 4th weekend," said Meincken. "We were completely booked and everything went pretty smooth."
Meincken also said retail sales were up from last year.
Fireworks over Lake Cumberland Sunday evening were well attended on shore and by boats on the lake Schumann said.
A joint effort cooperatively produced by Lake Cumberland State Dock and Jamestown Resort and Marina, the fireworks were a big hit.
"We had quite a bit of people for the fireworks, too," said Meincken.
He said between 5,000 and 7,000 visitors lined the shore to watch the annual fireworks display over the lake.
Schumann and Flatt agreed the thunderstorms that rolled through midmorning on July 4th didn't last long enough to dampen spirits of visitors who headed out immediately when the sun shown again.
"I just hope we get as good weather for Labor Day as we've had for the last two holidays," said Flatt.