By Ray Balogh
LAKE TIPPECANOE — The 2021 Lake Tippecanoe Fourth of July flotilla launched Saturday afternoon, July 3, with the eight entries reflecting the Kidz-A-Palooza youthful theme.
“We wanted to let the kids decide how they wanted the boats to look,” said Dan Drook, flotilla chairman. Sugar-laden treats and Looney Tunes were popular decorations of choice. Other designs included a unicorn, tiki bar, inflatable palm trees and a massive Space Jam poster.
The flotilla proceeded counterclockwise around the 756-acre lake, and hundreds of boats stationed themselves nearby to watch the aquatic parade. Members of the county sheriff’s department were
on hand in a boat and on a Jet Ski to monitor the proceedings.
The temperature was a perfect 74 degrees, though a notable wind and robust boat traffic conspired to make the lake surface somewhat choppy.
“We have always a very decent turnout” for the annual event, said Drook, who sat in the judge’s boat, a 27-foot pontoon donated by Patona Bay owner, George Paton.
Mike Kausal and Adrienne Drook served as judges, and awarded prizes for the top three designs:
• First place, Tippy Sugar Rush, entered by Rod Liechty. “They had very good creativity and stuck to the theme,” said Kausal. “Everybody on the boat was enthusiastic.”
• Second place, Candyland, entered by Clara Johnson. “Their originality was very on point,” according to Kausal.
• Third place, a unicorn-themed float with “great creativity,” entered by Susie Nelson.
“If we could have given a fourth prize, it would have been the ‘It Takes a Village’ entry,” agreed Kausal and Adrienne Drook.
Following is a gallery of the remaining entries and the sizable crowd of spectators. All photos by Ray Balogh.