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Best Summer Moments

10 Oct 2019 8:06 AM | Gibson (Administrator)

Yes, Labor Day weekend has passed and the summer of 2019 is in the history books, but don’t fret it isn’t really the end of the summer since we live in North Carolina, specifically in Rowan County, which is the perfect time of year for upcoming activities – county fairs, concerts and still lots of time to enjoy High Rock Lake.

Although it is a little early for pumpkin spice lattes, and mums on the front patio, I wanted to take this time to reflect on some of the big moments of the summer as some of you may have enjoyed them all first hand, or if you haven’t perhaps you need to run out to get your 2020 calendar now and circle some dates!

This is my personal list of the best activities on High Rock Lake, Rowan County style from this summer:

#1 Our annual Rowan Chamber Dragon Boat Festival is something the community looks forward to each year. And this year I jumped in with both feet to coordinate the food and display vendors on behalf of the Rowan Chamber. So, I may be a bit biased, but boy did we have food options – BBQ, hot dogs, hamburgers, kettle corn, shaved ice, dumplings and Som’s Teriyaki Chicken. And a hearty welcome aboard to Ya Ya’s Kitchen. YUM. I’m thinking all those options were complimented well by New Sarum Brewery’s product selection too.

The actual Dragon Boat festival not only offers visitors great views of our beautiful lake and shoreline but delivered downright hearty competition. We had 28 teams enter in this year’s event, with local team ‘Gator Bites’ taking the overall championship. Local music entertainer, and Catawba College student Seth Pittman played a couple of sets to bring more entertainment value to the event. With all of that and approximately 5,000 attendees, this is the must attend HRL event each summer. Mark your calendars for July 25, 2020!

#2 Who doesn’t like a Fourth of July holiday fireworks celebration? [Well, perhaps hundreds of dogs including my own baby Dane.] For the past three years, the Spencer Moose Lodge and Campground hosts a phenomenal firework display over the main channel for the July fourth celebration. This year’s extravaganza presented by Nazareth Child & Family Connection scheduled on Wednesday, July 3 delivered fantastic fireworks and a beautiful night!

Best viewing is always by boat near the opening of Swearing Creek but there are lots of access areas nearby for spectator parking, or if you have a friend that lives on the lake, bring some food and they just make let you hang out and enjoy the spectacle.

#3 A new lake sight-seeing activity was presented this summer and delivered as promised – the inaugural July 4th HRL dock decorating contest. High Rock Lake Association, the 55-year old membership-based non-profit organization has been the voice for the lake residents in promoting safe recreational use and environmental welfare of the lake and Yadkin River in Davidson and Rowan Counties, created a friendly competition among home owners to show their dock decorating skills during this past July 4th holiday. The winning dock owner received a four-foot antique carved oar trophy for the summer season, a $500 gift card for Rock Outdoors and of course, bragging rights.

More than 25 lakeside homes were decorated to the hilt and many more placed red, white and blue décor to join the fun and show their patriotic colors. The winning dock is in Crane Cove, Rowan County owned by Kris and Randy Hall. I hear from a few of the participants that they are already starting to strategize on their dock design for next year!

#4 As you have read a time or two, this HRL blogger does not fish, but watching the beehive of activity at Hill’s Minnow Farm & Sporting Goods store surrounding their annual Crappie Roundup on High Rock Lake does make fishing a bit more appealing. The annual fishing competition is from March 16 through May 25. More than 700 tagged fish were released in several Rowan County watering holes.

More than 1,400 fishermen participated this time around looking for a Crappie payday. Where else can you say those words and feel good about it?

And ranked in the top-five HRL cool experiences:

#5 ‘Float the Goat’ Darrell Harwood Concert on Goat Island Mikey Wetzel and High Rock Lake Life (Facebook group) created a new experience to entertain lake goers and to help raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society on Sunday, June 23. Darrell Harwood said in a Facebook post that the venue was ideal for summer lake entertainment and money was raised for this worthy cause. A floating venue with three pontoon boats and stage with concert goers in and on the water was an ideal location. Stay tuned for news on another concert in 2020.

And my almost top five best moment in summer 2019, hasn’t even happened yet! – it’s the High Rock Lake CleanSweep #HRLCleanSweep on Saturday, September 21. If you are game to be a volunteer and give a helping hand or fishing net to capture whatever is floating, we want to see you at the N.C. Wildlife Access Area off Bringle Ferry Road! There is a cool tee shirt and lunch in it for you. For more information check out the Facebook page: HRLCleanSweep for more information. See you out on the lake.

We are in Rowan County, N.C. so winter’s gloomy days are not coming for a full four months, so there is still time to get out and enjoy what High Rock Lake has to offer.

I would love to hear from you what your favorite lake summer moments are, please email me at

#itsaROCOthing #lakeliving #YourRowan #BeAnOriginal

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