Commonwealth Journal

Local News

July 2, 2013

Lake ready for busy July 4

Somerset —

Never mind the showers. Independence Day is the busiest holiday of summer and the welcome mat is out. The Ohio Navy is headed to Lake Cumberland Country!
Houseboats at all marinas are reserved. Rental boats are primed to hit the water. Tents are staked at camping areas along the lake.   
Some visitors with roots deep in this area are simply coming home. Grandma is ready; she’s got dinner on the stove. Grandpa is looking down the road; they can’t wait for the children to arrive. It’s a homecoming!
The weatherman is the only one not wearing a smiley face. He wants to rain on our picnic.
Phooey on him. It won’t be a washout but it appears Mother Nature will compete with numerous fireworks shows planned during the festivities.
Granted, there may be thunder and lightning, but it will take some doing to outdo Somerblast, the city-sponsored fireworks celebration at Somersplash. The pyrotechnic extravaganza begins at 10 p.m. Saturday at Somerset’s magnificent water park.
Of course, the higher level of the lake is the buzzword. Tom Hale, operations manager for the reservoir, said the water is in fine shape.
“There’s hardly any debris ... oh, maybe an isolated chunk that people should watch for, but basically the lake is in fine shape,” Hale reported. This is the first July 4th holiday in six summers that the lake has been on the rise.
A rather comprehensive survey of vacation retreats by Somerset-Pulaski County Convention and Visitors Bureau indicates a lot of folks will be staying an extra day or two.
“We checked marinas locally and around the lake and they are all happy, busy and optimistic,” said Carolyn Mounce, executive director of the bureau.
In summary, she said, houseboats and boats were 86 percent booked on Monday, the day the survey was taken. Expectations are the remainder will be taken by Thursday, the first full day of a lengthy 102-hour holiday period.

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