Sprawling over 45,000 surface acres and an amazing 66 miles long, Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees is one of the most amazing lakes in the state of Oklahoma. Visitors from all over the world have graced the waters of one of the best that the state has to offer. Over the years, the lake has grown to include many fun events that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and all walks of life. While there are actually plenty of things to do year round, the summertime months are truly when Grand Lake comes alive. Don’t miss your chance to come and play or enjoy something you may not have known existed before. By lake or by land, these are some of the best things to enjoy this summer.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. Parasailing at Sail Grand, Shangri-La.
Soar to heights of up to 600 feet and take in the panoramic views of Grand Lake at the only parasailing adventure offered in the state of Oklahoma! Be brave by flying solo or bring along a friend and go tandem for a flight you will never forget. Memorial Day through Labor Day.
2. Rock Crawling below the Pensacola Dam, Disney.
Participate or spectate on the rocks! Tens of thousands of off-road enthusiasts from around the United States converge on the trails below the dam every year. Jeeps, four wheelers, RZRS, trucks and rock bouncers know this hidden gem of a playground won’t be a secret much longer. No entry fee. Open year round.
3. GLOC Shootout, Grove.
Spend the day watching one of only five races like it in the country! High performance boats race the radar gun and exceed speeds of over 150 miles per hour. Racers from all over the world bring their race boats to take part in the weeklong event that has taken the racing world by storm every July on Grand Lake by Sailboat Bridge.
4. Pensacola Dam Tour, Langley.
One of the best Dam tours you’ll ever take! The Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA) has a free, open to the public tour that is fun, informative and educational for all. Get up close and personal with the inner workings of a one of the largest power producing dams in the country. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
5. World War II Warbird Planes, Ketchum.
Get up close and personal with the World War II Warbird airplanes for the afternoon. Visit with the pilots and enjoy a picnic type environment at the South Grand Lake Regional Airport every Independence Day. Watch the airplanes arrive and then take off for a flyover that you and your family will never forget!
6. Duck Creek Fireworks, Afton.
The largest fireworks display in the state is funded by the people and for the people. Come and see why this is the fifth best pyrotechnic display in the United States. Synchronized to patriotic music, this 30-minute spectacle will leave you awestruck and speechless. Every Independence Day on Grand Lake, it’s the only show you will need to see… ever again.
7. Surfing, Monkey Island.
Surf’s up dude! It’s tough to find a pair of water skis on Grand Lake for all of the surf boards that have taken over. Rent boats and boards at Sail Grand or speak to any of the marinas on the lake to explain how you and your family can learn all about the newest craze! Hang ten, in Oklahoma!
The Red Neck Raft Out, Cleora.
The simple man’s raft out has turned into one of the biggest parties of the year on Grand Lake. Come for hours of live music and fun at the tail end of Duck Creek. This most family oriented raft out is held every Labor Day. Come see the hilarious costumes as this raft out benefits the Oklahoma Make a Wish Foundation.
9. Monkey Island Horse Ranch, Monkey Island.
Plan a day at the ranch as you go horseback riding in God’s country. The guided tours provide a fun day with you, your family and nature. Come and learn some Grand Lake history and enjoy an easy day of riding.
10. Sailing, Grand Lake Sail Club, Grove.
If you enjoy a slower pace on the water, then you won’t want to miss your chance to sail with the Grand Lake Sail Club in Grove. Rent a sailboat for a few hours to enjoy an adventure like no other.
11. Alpacas, Zena.
Nearly 70 alpacas and a dozen llamas call the Zena Suri Alpaca Ranch home. This free and open to the public ranch is one of the most unique in the state of Oklahoma. Get up close and personal with the animals and enjoy a picnic lunch on the grounds as you learn about these incredible animals.
12. Lendonwood Gardens, Grove.
Enjoy the beauty of these well-kept gardens which wind you down paths to a koi pond at the Japanese Tea House. The lovely gardens offer a beautiful backdrop for photography or a nice, serene day with your family or by yourself. Visit the Angel of Hope statue on the grounds as well.
13. Wakeboarding, Monkey Island.
Rent a boat and a wake board to enjoy some awesomeness on the water with your family this summer. Sail Grand can take care of your adventurous needs. You can also stop by various marinas on the lake to inquire about how you can enjoy this sport on Grand Lake.
14. Rocklahoma, Pryor.
You wanna rock? Pryor can take care of that for you. This three day concert festival is now well known around the world as one you don’t want to miss. Held each Memorial Day weekend, you never know who you’re going to see on stage, but you know it’s going to ROCK!
15. The Queen, Grove.
This old riverboat replica is a summertime favorite around Grand Lake. The slow pace of the tour allows for enjoyment, relaxation, and ample time to take breathtaking photos of Grand Lake.
Did I miss any of your favorite summertime activities at Grand Lake? Let me know in the comment section below.