Let freedom ring!

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Photo by Mike clary

It will be a red, white and blue Thursday as thousands of guests join Canyon Lakers in celebrating the nation’s birth with food, fun and fireworks.

Barbecues, backyard pool parties, boating, floating in the lake on a Lily Pad and family gatherings are just some of the ways Canyon Lakers will celebrate Independence Day. Canyon Lake has one of the best fireworks show in the county of Riverside, making it a popular destination for residents and their guests. Old-timers know the routine, but newcomers will want to be aware that the population of Canyon Lake swells by thousands on the 4th of July. Following these tips will go a long way toward keeping the holiday enjoyable for your family and friends.

Guests

Those inviting guests into the community should call them in as early as possible. Member Services and Community Patrol will be especially busy in the weeks leading up to the holiday. With thousands of guests entering the gates on the 4th of July, gate traffic can get backed up and guests delayed. The POA encourages residents to use the e-pass service for their guests. Residents should advise their guests to arrive early, know the address they are going to and have their driver’s license ready to show the gate guard.

Fireworks Show

Fireworks will be launched from Skipper’s Island at 9 p.m. Spectators can tune into 99.9 FM to hear music synchronized to the show from anywhere around the lake. Mike Shroyer of Good Time Entertainment will be playing music from the lodge patio leading up to the show.

Causeways

Spectators may sit on the causeways to view the show; however, vehicles and golf carts are not allowed to stop or park on the causeways.

Parks and Beaches

Parks and beaches will open at 6 a.m. and close at 10 p.m. Setup in the parks won’t be allowed before they open. The picnic tables at Holiday Harbor Park have been reserved through a POA lottery system; however, the amphitheater and other areas of the park are available on a first-come basis. Portable tables, chairs and canopies are acceptable. Personal items left at the parks and beaches before and after park hours will be removed.

Pool

The pool hours are 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. All activities at the pool are canceled for the day. The pool will close promptly at 8 p.m. for the fireworks show, no one will be allowed in the pool deck area after 8 p.m. Spectators are welcome to watch the fireworks from the walkway around the pool.

Boating Reminders

Unregistered boats are not permitted on the lake and are subject to a $500 citation. Marine Patrol will be verifying boats for current registration at all launch ramps. Those who need a safety inspection completed on their boats in order to register them should contact Marine Patrol at 951-244-6841, ext. 415 to schedule an appointment.

Boats must maintain a safe distance from Skipper’s Island during the fireworks show. Marine Patrol will be instructing boaters to stay at least 350 feet back from the red buoys. The show will not begin unless all boats are within a safe distance from the island and the fire marshal announces “all clear.”

Towing

Towing will not be permitted on the main lake after 12 p.m.

Road Closures

Residents leaving their homes to travel in and around the community will want to be aware of road closures and detours before, during and after the fireworks show.

Starting at 2 p.m., Longhorn Drive will close at Strawberry Lane to Happy Camp beginning at 2 p.m. Only Longhorn Drive residents past Strawberry Lane, guests at Happy Camp and emergency vehicles may pass.

Starting at 8:30 p.m., the following roads closures will occur:

Lighthouse Drive at Vacation Drive.

Canyon Club Drive at Canyon Lake Drive North.

Main causeway from Village Way Drive to Blue Teal Drive to Vacation Drive stop sign.

Blue Teal Drive will close once causeway is closed.

All traffic, including pedestrian traffic, to Happy Camp is stopped at 8:30 p.m.

After the Show

After the show, Community Patrol will be directing vehicles to the quickest community exit, which could be in an alternate direction of your desired exit. Pedestrian traffic will be given priority along Canyon Club Drive and the main causeway in the first 30 minutes after the show.

Vehicles and golf carts can exit Happy Camp via Longhorn Drive. They may turn left onto Vacation Drive to exit the community through the north gate or turn right on Vacation Drive for destinations inside Canyon Lake.

Vehicles and golf carts exiting the lodge will be required to exit onto Lighthouse Drive. From Lighthouse Drive, vehicles may turn left or right onto Vacation Drive.

Vehicles and golf carts exiting Holiday Harbor Park will be required to turn right onto Canyon Lake Drive South towards the main gate.

Lodge Hours

The lodge bar and lounge will open at 3 p.m. and offer a limited appetizer menu. The restaurant will be serving an All-American dinner buffet starting at 5 p.m. The cost is $18.95 for adults and $9.95 for children ages six to 12. Children 5 and younger are free with each paid adult. Early reservations are recommended and can be made by calling 951.244.6841, ext. 771.

Other Reminders

There will be zero tolerance for juveniles with alcohol, as well as strict enforcement of boating and driving under the influence laws.

Residents are reminded the prime member is responsible for the actions of his or her family, guests, renters and lessees, this also includes any citations. Prime members are responsible for knowing the POA’s Rules & Regulations and are asked to be respectful of those in authority who are trying to enforce the rules and safety for everyone.

The POA offices will be closed on July 4.

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Donna Ritchie