If you find yourself wondering, “What are we doing at the Lake this weekend?”, it’s because you didn’t read this first.
by Emily Debert
The boating season at Lake of the Ozarks may not be year-round. But for Lake of the Ozarks boaters, there’s something to enjoy as part of the boating lifestyle every month of the year. (Note: dates are subject to change, and some had not been set by the time of this publication. Always check the event’s website or social media before you go!)
Jan. 30 – Feb. 2 – America’s Center & The Dome
Enjoy 4 days of outdoor fun at the Progressive® Insurance St. Louis Boat & Sportshow®! Whether you’re an avid outdoorsman or are just looking for a way to escape winter for the day, this is YOUR show! The annual 4-day event turns America’s Center & The Dome into a one-stop marketplace for outdoor fun— the best place to see and buy everything you need for your outdoor adventures! See nearly a thousand boats for every activity, lifestyle and budget.
Feb. 13-17 – Miami Marine Stadium
At this incredible show, boaters get the chance to experience the boating lifestyle in a whole new way. More than 1,300 boats are displayed on land with more than 600 in the water. Marine accessories, electronics, engines, nautical gifts and apparel, and services are available in both closed and open-air tented exhibit space. Brands such as Aquila, Grady-White, Sea Ray, Midnight Express, and more are on display.
March 5-8 – St. Charles Convention Center
Top lines of boats, marine accessories, docks personal watercraft and everything you need to have fun on the Lake, presented by Lake of the Ozarks Marine Dealers.
(Normally St. Patrick’s Day weekend — check website for date)
Though it’s still often a tad chilly, St. Patrick’s Day kicks off the spring and summer season at the Lake! Don’t hide your “Kiss Me I’m Irish” tee for this one! And if you’d rather outsource a captain, reserve a spot on one of the large cruise boats that participate.
March 28-29 – Alhonna Resort
This tournament usually takes place the last weekend in March during the bass’ natural spawning period. Seven and eight pound fish are not uncommon!
April 17-19 – Dog Days Bar & Grill
Enjoy shopping the way it was mean to be done, with boats on the water. Take your top picks for a test cruise and enjoy food and drinks at Dog Days.
April 18-19 (tentative date: check website)
The Big Bass Bash is a bass tournament designed for amateurs only. Its unique format allows the weekend angler a chance to win big money like the professionals. Unlike most fishing tournaments which have a team arrangement where prizes are based on total weight, the Big Bass Bash format is distinctive in that it only takes one big bass to win. The prize money for the Spring Big Bass Bash will total over $250,000 payouts, with $100,000 going to the winner.
If you haven’t de-winterized the boat yet, now’s the time! Win with the best, or worst, poker hands collected from all your favorite waterfront bars at the Lake of the Ozarks.
Memorial Day Fireworks
There’s nothing quite like the sight of fireworks over the water. Locations around the Lake honor the memory of fallen soldiers with stunning fireworks displays on Memorial Day weekend: one of the most popular weekends of the year on Lake of the Ozarks.
The fastest boats from around the country descend on the Lake, pushing their machines to the limits and competing for prize money and bragging rights.
June 6-7 – Osage River
Paddle or float your way down the Osage River by moonlight in this 61-mile race. Or enjoy all the fun without so much work in the 14-mile Fun Run. Both events support Lake of the Ozarks Watershed Alliance.
Performance Boat Center
A legendary meet-up of one of the most iconic powerboat brands that brings go-fast fans to the Lake of the Ozarks, hosted by Performance Boat Center.
Cheer champion and novice high-flying furry friends compete to see who can jump the farthest, swim the fastest, and fly the highest! It’s the Olympics for dogs.
Powerboaters roar across the Lake in a win-win event: winning poker hands while supporting military families in their communities through H.E.R.O.E.S. CARE.
Independence Day Fireworks
Ditch the city crowds and check out one of the illuminating fireworks displays, reflecting on the water. It’s like getting to watch two fireworks shows at the same time!
July 20 – Dog Days Bar & Grill
Dance, float and chill at the Lake’s largest concert on the water.
A fun run just for PWCs! Riders follow the Osage and Missouri River all the way to the Mississippi River in St. Louis to support the Tri-County YMCA.
The largest unsanctioned powerboat race in the country, along with a week of getting nose-to-nose with the hottest boats around, meeting racers and their teams and charity events for the community make the last weekend on August unbeatably awesome. Summer’s not over yet!
Labor Day Fireworks
Nothing beats watching explosions of brilliant red, white and blue over the water on a summer evening.
Enjoy the Niangua from a different perspective: float or paddle from the Whistle Stop Bridge to Ha Ha Tonka.
Sept. 25-27 – Captain Ron’s Bar & Grill
Captain Ron’s hosts the best way to shop for boat, on the water! Browse the best from local dealers, all in one spot, and take advantage of some year-end clearance prices.
An annual fall tradition with hundreds of chances to win and more than $250,000 up for grabs.
October 24-25 – Alhonna Resort
A backdrop of warm autumn colors makes this 100% payout tournament an unbeatable way for anglers to spend a fall weekend.
The unofficial end to the boating season, Fall Harbor Hop is your chance to eat and drink your favorite water bars and restaurants out of stock as they close doors for winter.
A unique spin on a fishing tournament, amateur anglers get the chance to fish and golf with Pro Fisherman.
Deck the Docks
Christmas on the Lake means holiday light bounces and sparkles over the water. See it all for yourself from the warmth of the Celebration cruise boat.
Four dates between December and January gives serious anglers a taste of what they miss about summer.