What does Independence Day mean to you?

We all know July 4th is celebrated as the birth of America’s Independence, which is synonymous with parades, concerts, fireworks, family gatherings, beach trips, and BBQ. But it is more than just a reason to celebrate a long weekend during the summer.


Photo courtesy of Shaun Brinkle


When I first moved to High Rock Lake in Rowan County, one of the coolest things that I witnessed were fireworks over the lake – the sound, the reflection over the water, and the boats situated as one large floating audience with their lights illuminating the surroundings. I wanted to learn more about this event, and now I want to share this event with you.

For the past three years, the Spencer Moose Lodge and Campground hosts a phenomenal firework display over the main channel for the July 4th celebration. This year’s extravaganza presented by Nazareth Child & Family Connection will be on Wednesday, July 3 at 8 p.m. The best viewing is by boat or off the dock at a friends’ lake house. There is parking on site at the Spencer Moose Lodge and Campground off Long Ferry Road. Spectators can watch for free, but it is recommended to arrive early. Guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets and make it a fun lakeside party. However, pets are not allowed.

Tamarac Marina & Restaurant at 9120 Bringle Ferry Road, Salisbury, NC is another great location for family festivities. The offerings are going to be endless making them a one-stop-shop for all your lake day necessities. Perhaps owner Dan Black could rename it to “Tamarac Marina & Campground, Bait Shop, Quik Mart, Karaoke Bar, Beach & Picnic Area, Pontoon Rental, and Camping Supplies Super Store.”


Photo courtesy of Joyce Caron-Mercier


Keeping the Fireworks Tradition on High Rock Lake Alive

Headquartered in Rockwell, NC with additional locations in Salisbury, Lexington, and Albemarle, Nazareth Child and Family Connection’s vision statement sums up what they do: “All individuals will live and grow in a safe and happy home environment, free of abuse and oppression, and with a healthy respect for themselves and others.”

Isn’t that what American independence is all about? Patriotism, family fun, and community all rolled into one big event! That is what July 4th means to me.

“Our community has been so generous to Nazareth for more than 100 years, so this is a little way we can help pay that generosity forward. It’s also a great lesson for our kids about the importance of giving back to the community,” said Vernon Walters Jr., President and CEO of Nazareth Child and Family Connection. “We greatly appreciate all of our sponsors that help with this. Because of them we are able to put on this show for the community each year.”

One significant fundraiser for the annual fireworks display is the 26th Annual $2,000 Give-Away which raises approximately $17,000 from ticket sales and another $8,000 from sponsorships toward the fireworks expense. The steak dinner is scheduled for Saturday, June 22 at the Rowan County Shrine Club featuring the Tim Clark Band and is already sold out thanks to supporters and sponsors including Point Security, Brian Holland, Denise Durham, Jerry & Maxine McDaniel, Libba Kennedy, Coldwell Banker Triad Realtors, Allied Veterans Post 17, Shug, Davis Chevrolet, Mike Farrell, Salisbury Elks Lodge, Kannapolis Power Equipment, Vernon and Renee Walters, Cloninger Ford, Dennis Laughlin, Greene Solar Power, Kenny Green, Interior Solutionz Inc., Tony Greene, Tom & Debbie Hardin, G T & A, Gary Trout, KW Framing, and Eric Wilson.

In-kind sponsors make a difference and add to the giveaways. These sponsors include: Hayes Jewelers, Richard Petty Driving Experience, United Beverage, R. H. Barringer Dist. Co., Lexington, and Spencer Moose Lodge #219.

Now you know when, why, and how the fireworks spectacular came about. I hope you get to enjoy it too with family and friends, and please support the event sponsors!


July 4th Viewing – Patriotic Colors Shown at HRL

If you do get the chance to be out on a boat over the holiday, you will notice an uptick in patriotic dock decorations. The High Rock Lake Association (HRLA) is a 55-year old membership-based non-profit organization that 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. They created a friendly competition among home owners to show their dock decorating skills for Independence Day, the Inaugural High Rock Lake July 4th Dock Decorating Contest. The winning dock owner will receive a four-foot antique carved oar trophy for the summer season, a $500 gift card for Rock Outdoors, and of course, bragging rights.


High Rock Lake July 4th Dock Decorating Contest


“I have lived on High Rock Lake my entire life. Growing up on the lake, we always looked at July 4th as the midway point of the summer. The kids are out of school and friends and family are here to visit and enjoy what lake living has to offer. We have a lot to be proud of and showing our patriotic pride with decorating our docks is something that we can share with our neighbors and lake visitors alike,” said Lee Snow, President of HRLA. “Organizing an inaugural event from getting the word out and establishing the judging criteria really got our board of directors excited for the entire lake community. Committee members found this antique wooden oar that has been engraved for year-to-year bragging rights and connected with Rock Outdoors for a $500 gift card. I thought the bragging rights were good, but a shopping spree to enhance lake living certainly adds to the level of competition. Though board members cannot win, participating in a multiple community effort is good for branding HRLA and I hope to introduce new members to what this hard-working group does on behalf of the lake homeowners,” continued Snow.

High Rock Lake Associations’ Achievements

HRLA has many accomplishments to its resume, most recently negotiating major relief on pier repair permitting. Cube Hydro Carolinas will no longer require a permit for repairs you or your contractor make to piers as long as the repair is “like-for-like”.

HRLA also worked tirelessly for years to get the new operational standards for High Rock Lake included in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) license. This resulted in lake levels averaging 2 1/2 feet below full for an extended recreational season from April through October. The new license also limits winter draw-downs to only four months and not to exceed 10 feet. The new agreement ensures much improved lake levels and less fluctuation. For the 4,000+ High Rock Lake homeowners, visitors, and recreational fishermen, this means that we have higher lake levels during the recreational season. Come enjoy what High Rock Lake has to offer!

For more information on HRLA or to join, visit their website here.